An introduction to diagrams

As a teaser for a larger project on diagrams, Jane Nisselson describes how they exist in the real world.

Diagrams are everywhere — from the established conventions of highway signs to the newly emerging visualizations appearing on social networking websites. Most people have a personal experience of diagrams whether drawing directions or figuring out how to operate a new computer. Yet very few people are familiar with how we read or construct diagrams.

This short film introduces the language of diagrams and their role in visual thinking and communication. As only a film can do, it reveals the vocabulary "in the wild" and in the context of making and using diagrams.

I'm looking forward to the rest if this is any indication of what's to come.

Favorites

19 Maps That Will Blow Your Mind and Change the Way You See the World. Top All-time. You Won’t Believe Your Eyes. Watch.

Many lists of maps promise to change the way you see the world, but this one actually does.

A Day in the Life of Americans

I wanted to see how daily patterns emerge at the individual level and how a person’s entire day plays out. So I simulated 1,000 of them.

Where Bars Outnumber Grocery Stores

A closer look at the age old question of where there are more bars than grocery stores, and vice versa.

Years You Have Left to Live, Probably

The individual data points of life are much less predictable than the average. Here’s a simulation that shows you how much time is left on the clock.