* Welcome to the fifth (and final) post in Summit's 2015 Summer Intern Series! See below for Summer Analyst Bradley Rava's essay. Click here to learn more about our Summer Analyst/Associate program. *
The human brain is especially skilled at extracting information from visual data. However, it is limited to doing this in three or fewer dimensions—and many of our everyday challenges have more than three dimensions. For example, our career choices take into account a wide variety of variables: our interests, our abilities, where we want to live, the employment market, and more. How can we visualize problems that involve many dimensions? This is the question that topological data analysis (TDA) seeks to answer. Every data set has an inherent structure that can be expressed through a visualization, and this visualization can give us insight to the information contained within it.