• How tech companies are interconnected

    July 28, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    Interconnected tech companies

    Sarah Kessler and Nick Sigler examine the interconnectedness between major tech companies. I think this might be the beginnings of a tech version of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.

  • The Vizosphere

    July 25, 2011  |  Network Visualization


    There are lots of people on Twitter who talk visualization. Moritz Stefaner had some fun with Gephi for a view of a whole lot of those people. He calls it the Vizosphere.
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  • Computer assisted design and the 9/11 Memorial

    June 15, 2011  |  Network Visualization


    Digital artist Jer Thorp discusses the algorithm and tool used to arrange 9/11 victims' names based on who they were with when they died. The process started with the collection of data.
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  • All roads lead to philosophy, on Wikipedia

    June 8, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    All Roads lead to Philosophy - xefer

    Jeffrey Winter tests a hunch about links leading to philosophy on Wikipedia:

    There was an idea floating around that continuously following the first link of any Wikipedia article will eventually lead to "Philosophy." This sounded like a reasonable assertion, one that makes a certain amount of sense in retrospect: any description of something will typically use more general terms. Following that idea will eventually lead… somewhere.

    Winter's curiosity led to this simple mashup. Type in some terms in the search bar and see where those topics lead to. Lo and behold, they all reach philosophy somehow. The above was my own search for economy, poop, science, Forrest Gump, hamburger, and Chicago. Philosophy: the Kevin Bacon of Wikipedia.

    [Xefer | Thanks, Nigel]

  • Exploring NYT news and its authors

    May 24, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    NYTimes Writes

    The IBM Visual Communication Lab published their first of what I hope many sketches exploring topics covered by The New York Times and its authors called NYTimes Writes, by Irene Ros. Start with a search term, and the tool will fetch related articles from the past 30 days. You'll get something that looks like the above, which is what I got when i searched for "data."
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  • Movies with multiple Harry Potter wizards

    April 5, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    Harry Potter snapshot

    I feel like whenever I watch a British film, I see a Harry Potter wizard or witch in it. I guess I'm not imagining things. The Ragbag had a similar curiosity and graphed all the films with four or more wizards in it — all 24 of them.
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  • March Madness bracketology – winners and losers

    March 2, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    March madness

    Working off last year's bracketology graphic, Leonardo Aranda took a simpler approach in showing all the winners and losers from the NCAA tournament from 1985 to present. Each line represents a team (not a school), and championship winners are highlighted blue, so what you get is a quick view of the paths past winners have taken. No schools ranked lower than eight have ever win, and most winners have been seeded in the top three.

    I like this version better than last year's. The sorting is a lot easier to read and understand. What do you think?

    [yonoleo | Thanks, Leonardo]

  • Explore your LinkedIn network visually with InMaps

    January 24, 2011  |  Network Visualization

    LinkedIn map

    LinkedIn has been having some fun with their data lately. They opened up the career tree a couple of months ago, and today they announced InMap to visualize your links as a network diagram. They call it InMap:

    InMaps is an interactive visual representation of your professional universe that answers all of the above questions. It’s a great way to understand the relationships between you and your entire set of LinkedIn connections. With it you can better leverage your professional network to help pass along job opportunities, seek professional advice, gather insights, and more.

    Below is LinkedIn's chief scientist DJ Patil with a brief description of how it works.
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  • Similarities between PhD dissertations

    December 7, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Stanford Dissertation Browser- electrical engineering

    Certain fields of study tend to cover many of the same topics. Many times, the two fields go hand-in-hand. Electrical engineering, for example, ties tightly with computer science. Same thing between education and sociology. Daniel Ramage and Jason Chuang of Stanford University explore these similarities through the language used in their school's dissertations.
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  • Build your LinkedIn career tree

    November 29, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Career tree for Barack Obama

    How did you get to where you are now in your work life? What about Barack Obama? Ashton Kutcher? Jon Stewart? In a collaboration between Newsweek and Bocoup, the Career Tree displays your LinkedIn profile (or a handful of celebrities) as a budding network.
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  • Why network visualization is useful

    November 17, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Network visusalization - Radial layout

    AT&T Labs' Infoviz research group describes network graphs and their many uses:

    There is information in the connections. A glance is enough to identify nodes with the most links, nodes straddling different subgroups, and nodes isolated by their lack of connections. Corporations might look at a graph to verify that marketing and sales are communicating, urban planners to monitor the interconnectedness, or isolation, of neighborhoods, biologists to discover interactions between genes, and network analysts to monitor security.

    And on aesthetics:

    Aesthetics is important not so much for looks—though some visualizations can be stunning to look at—but for readability. Links that intersect and nodes that overlay one another result in poor readability, and graph visualization programs work hard to minimize the number of link intersections and give enough whitespace around each node to make it stand out from its neighbors.

    [AT&T Labs via TomC]

  • Mexican drug cartel network map

    November 9, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Eduardo Salcedo-Albarán

    I'm not entirely sure what we're looking at here, other than relationships between Mexican drug cartels. Maybe someone can shed some light on the subject.

    [Edge via We Love Datavis]

  • Billionaires’ favorite politicians

    November 1, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Billionaire favorite politician by Forbes

    Jon Bruner for Forbes reports on billionaire contributions to politicians over the past four years:

    The billionaires on the Forbes 400 list have given more than $30 million to politicians and political action committees since 2006, along with millions more in soft money to politically active groups. Although Forbes 400 members give about 15% more money to Republicans than Democrats, they fund groups across the political spectrum.

    On the top are the billionaires, sized by the amount of donations, and on the bottom are the politicians, sized by amount of contributions received. Click on either or use the drop down menus to see the connections.

    It lacks some polish, and I'm not totally sure what measurements are used for vertical and horizontal placement, but worth clicking around.

    [Thanks, @JonBruner]

  • Where refugees come from

    October 13, 2010  |  Mapping, Network Visualization

    Flight & Expulsion - flows

    Thousands of people flee their country every year, and the travel patterns are by no means easy to understand. Christian Behrens, in a revamp of a class project, visualizes these refugee movements with three views. The first is a circular network diagram (above), where each slice represents a region or country. Lines represent flight and expulsions.
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  • Software evolution storylines

    October 12, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Apache Webserver storylines

    In a follow up to code_swarm, a visualization to show the development of software projects, Michael Ogawa has another look with Software Evolution Storylines:

    My previous software visualization experiment, code_swarm, turned out pretty good. But some wanted a more analytic view of the data — one that was more persistent. I wondered about what this could look like, and came across this XKCD comic. It represents characters as lines that converge in time as they share scenes. Could this technique be adapted for software developers who work on the same code?

    The difference between this and the xckd comic is that instead of fictional characters, there are now developers, and instead of characters crossing paths, developers cluster when they work commit changes to the same file. The histogram on the bottom provides information on the type of files that were committed during any given time. Roll over any line to focus on a specific devleoper.
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  • Mobile patent lawsuits

    October 11, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    mobile lawsuits graphic by the guardian

    It seems like all the mobile groups are suing each other these days. Who's suing whom? What company is suing the most? Who's getting sued the most? There was a mini-wave of graphics last week to help answer these questions.
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  • Various ways to rate a college

    September 8, 2010  |  Network Visualization, Statistics

    Measures for different college ratings

    There are a bunch of college ratings out there to help students decide what college to apply to (and give something for alumni to gloat about). The tough part is that there doesn't seem to be any agreement on what makes a good college. Alex Richards and Ron Coddington describe the discrepancies.
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  • Pseudo-variety and ownership of the soft drink industry

    August 23, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    Soft drink industry - network diagram

    When you buy soft drinks and other beverages at the grocery store, most likely you're buying something that is part of a bigger brand. We know this. When you buy Powerade or Sprite, you're buying from the Coca-Cola brand. When you buy Gatorade or Mountain Dew, you're buying from Pepsi. Canada Dry and 7-Up come from the Dr. Pepper Snapple group. How far is this reach though?
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  • What online marketers know about you

    August 3, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    What marketers known - network visualization

    Andrew Garcia Philips and Sarah Slobin (plus five data gatherers) of The Wall Street Journal report on the prevalence of trackers and cookies on the fifty most popular U.S. websites:

    Marketers are spying on Internet users — observing and remembering people's clicks, and building and selling detailed dossiers of their activities and interests. The Wall Street Journal's What They Know series documents the new, cutting-edge uses of this Internet-tracking technology. The Journal analyzed the tracking files installed on people's computers by the 50 most popular U.S. websites, plus WSJ.com.

    Websites (top half) and tracking companies (bottom half) are placed in the circular network diagram. Roll over a website, and lines flare out to the tracking companies that collect data about you on that site. Similarly, roll over a tracking company to see what sites they sit on. Lines are color-coded to indicate first-party tracker files and third-party ones.
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  • Imported World Cup players

    June 29, 2010  |  Network Visualization

    multicultural sports

    The World Cup is an event where countries from all over the world compete, but what about the teams themselves? Players may play for a single country, but many are 'imported' from elsewhere in the world as their day jobs are actually elsewhere. This isn't a new thing, but teams have certainly become more multicultural over the years. Continue Reading

Unless otherwise noted, graphics and words by me are licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC. Contact original authors for everything else.