A picture speaks louder than words, but only if it’s the right picture.
Here we share 9 examples of infographics that powerfully communicate insightful new understandings about our world.
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'In our Data Visualization 101 series, we cover each chart type to help you sharpen your data visualization skills.
Bar charts are a highly versatile way to visually communicate data. Decidedly straightforward, they can convey the message behind the numbers with impact and meaningful clarity, making complex data easy to understand at a glance.'
It is no longer a secret that to communicate effectively we need a combination of words, numbers and images; hence the popularity of infographics. In the field of sustainability and corporate responsibility, where communication is overburdened with indicators and statistics, this mix is particularly suited to getting messages across to both experts and new audiences. Indeed, adopting a variety of formats reflects broader trends in digital communications...
Crafting an infographic narrative is an art. We detail the five elements of an editorial infographic's narrative and what each element aims to accomplish.
The best infographics are created when a story comes first. In a completed piece, every data point, piece of copy, and design element should support that story. This does not mean, however, that the story an individual or organization wants to tell will intuitively translate to the infographic medium.
Even in instances where all information and data exists on paper, the story may still require adaptation—crafting an infographic narrative to effectively communicate the story. While specific needs vary across applications of infographics, for editorial pieces, this process typically involves writing titles, introductory paragraphs, callouts, and conclusions—the pieces that weave the story together.
It could be argued that early caveman actually invented infographics.
It wasn’t until 1626, however, that infographics were published in the book Rosa Ursina Sive Sol by Christoph Scheiner. His illustrations clearly and concisely demonstrated the rotation patterns of the Sun. After that, infographics appeared regularly in a variety of other publications.
In the 1970’s, The Sunday Times, an award-winning British newspaper, began using infographics to make the news more interesting. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, other newspapers began following suit.
By the turn of the 21st century, new technologies emerged that enabled a host of companies to create infographics quickly and easily. Infographics slowly began making their way onto websites, in magazines, products and games...
Color is a crucial part of our visual experience.
It indicates many things in our lives, from the ripeness of a banana, to how someone is feeling, to which subway line we should be on.
Not everyone sees colors the same way, and colors have drastically different meanings in different cultures, but one thing we all have in common: color is important. These visualizations all show us different things about colors.
Visit the original article for over a dozen infographics and links related to color psychology, trends and various uses and applications.
Within the typographic communities, people have debated on the issue: Do serifs contribute to the legibility of typefaces, and are sans serif typefaces less legible?
Like many things, these two different fonts have pros and cons. This infographic takes a look at the argument of serif vs sans serif...
People who create infographics do their work partly because they believe infographics are a great way to communicate information.
Since the people in this field also need to communicate information about their work, it was inevitable that infographics about infographics would eventually be created. Here are 11 of those meta infographics.
Visual communication skills are alien to some in the research industry, but they needn’t be. Data visualisation can become part of the research process through smart hiring, skills training and expert partnerships.
Data visualisation should not be regarded as an end in itself; the real point to data visualisation - the value that it brings to research buyers and suppliers - is as an aid to storytelling. It’s about seeing the patterns in the data that flush out a story and then help you to start telling that story. Only by doing that can you move data off the spreadsheet and out into the real world of consumer behaviour and preferences.
The best analogy and the one used frequently, is with journalism. It’s no surprise either that many great examples of data visualisation come from the publishing and media sectors. Journalists face the same challenge that we do of sifting large amounts of often conflicting data to arrive at a truth or an insight...
Lauren Moss's insight:
An interesting look at the current role of data visualization and data journalism in the advancement of research, communication, and brand development.
At the Visualized conference on November 9th, Neil Halloran posed an interesting question: Can DataViz lead to a data savvy society in the same way that the printing press lead to a literate one? One that is prepared to make tough decisions on complex issues?
Neil Halloran thinks so. That’s why he created VisualBudget.org to cut through hyperbole surrounding the what may be the most frequently misunderstood and pressing issue facing Americans today, our massive $16 trillion dollar deficit.
But how is a modern citizen supposed to make an informed decision on issues of tremendous scope and complexity, such as the fiscal cliff or the growing budget deficit without falling back on sound bites and punditry? Neil Halloran’s solution is to tell a story. Rather than simply presenting a static infographic or a set of tabular data on federal receipts and expenditures, VisualBudget.org takes you on a interactive tour...
In this new world of exploding data volumes, the ability to make sense of all this data and effectively communicate insights from it is a highly valued skillset. Communicating trustworthy insights includes choosing the appropriate data visualizations to tell a story or make a key point. That may seem trivial at first, but in fact, it is quite powerful. In some fields such as research, healthcare or military, the use of data and visualizations has specific guidelines since misinterpretations could impact human lives.
Most of the time getting data visualizations right is not a life and death matter, but it is important. There are several highly-regarded thought leaders with excellent reading material on this topic, including Stephen Few and Edward Tufte. If you have not read any of their books and you are in an analytics/business intelligence profession, consider this a “must do” before you build another report or dashboard.
In the meantime, read the article at the link for more details, a few of the most common mistakes and some best practices to keep in mind...
Creating a great visualization is not as hard as it seems.
Provided you have some interesting data and an effective tool with which to visualize it, a little bit of thoughtful design will lead to a decent result. That said, there are some mistakes that are very easy to make, but can ruin even a thoughtfully-made piece. Here are four data visualization mistakes you should avoid...
How do you make knowledge powerful? This cool Motion Graphic describes the value of data visualization.
Physical versions of pie and bar charts and a tapestry that represents human voices are attempts by designers to make data more accessible
With life saturated by screen-based information, designers are presenting information in more tangible ways. As part of the V&A’s recent Digital Design Weekend, several projects opted for low-tech ways of representing data.
Among these was Physical Charts, a project by Microsoft Research Cambridge for the Tenison Road community project that set out to encourage civic engagement with locally generated data, such as surveys on traffic and air quality. The result is a mechanical pie chart made from slices of sheet plastic attached to a central motor and bar chart constructed from motorised measuring tapes, both of which animate to display real-time data.
The intention, says project designer David Sweeney, was to create something easily legible, but with a sense of magic and theatre. “We wanted to find a way to communicate data back to the people generating it, but in a digestible way, so they were connected to it,” he says...
As Facebook buys Oculus and Sony reveals its own VR device, Dezeen investigates what the resurgence of this old school technology means for designers.
Oculus VR was already big before Facebook bought the virtual reality headset maker for $2 billion. "Oculus has the potential to be the most social platform ever," said Mark Zuckerberg in a call to Facebook's investors, while his announcement post painted a picture of the world donning headsets to watch tennis, study in classrooms and consult with doctors.
Facebook sees Oculus Rift as a chance to profoundly transform communication, and to the gaming industry it's a generational leap in electronic entertainment. But there's more to virtual reality. It's as much a creative tool for designers and architects, as it is a new medium for designers to explore, and a close and personal way of experiencing the creations of others...
Graphology--the study of handwriting--has long been considered a pseudoscience, in the same family as phrenology and astrology. But a new study claims that the way you write can indicate more than 5,000 personality traits.
This handwriting analysis adds research to what typeface and graphic designers know intuitively--how the aesthetics of letterforms express information. For example, letters with no slant indicate "logic and practicality," as seen in the straight-up-and-down logos of no-nonsense firms like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley. The way graffiti writers play with lettering also reflects the study’s results--rounded letters indicate creativity and artistic talent, and spray-painted tags are rarely angular.
Find more information at the article link.