• Unemployment, 2004 to Present – The Country is Bleeding

    November 4, 2009  |  Data Sources, Mapping

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the most recent unemployment numbers last week. Things aren't looking good for the unemployed, I'm afraid.

    I showed my younger sister the maps. Her response: "It looks like the country is bleeding."
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  • Fictional Character Interactions Over Time

    November 3, 2009  |  Infographics

    Popular nerd comic xckd takes a look at character interactions over time in Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, 12 Angry Men, and Primer. The horizontal axis is time and the vertical axis indicates which characters are together at any given time. The result is something that looks like famed Minard graphic. Well, sort of. And of course it's all hand drawn, which adds to the nerd-ish charm.

    [Thanks, Wesley & Dave & Everyone else]

  • A Land Where Men and Women are Paid Equally

    November 2, 2009  |  Infographics

    equal-pay

    We all know (or at least should know) about the pay gap between men and women in the workplace. This graphic from Shakeup Media was made to highlight that gap by comparing two cities in the UK at opposite ends of the spectrum. In one city women are paid way less than men while in the other, women are actually paid a tad more.

    The aesthetic is nice and the subject matter is important. I also like the use of the Easy Tooltip jQuery plugin.

    I just wish there was more focus on the actual pay gap. Instead it was more of an exercise in displaying demographics of two cities, where each section is separate from the other. Some annotation in the tooltips about the cities' differing demographics would have tied things together nicely.

    [Thanks, Ryan]

  • Putting Cell Size in Perspective

    October 30, 2009  |  Infographics

    cell-size

    It's hard for us, cognitively speaking, to imagine things that are really really big or really really small, so we need things to put things in perspective.
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  • Using Flickr as a Paintbrush

    October 28, 2009  |  Mapping

    Andy Woodruff from Cartogrammar uses average color in Flickr photos to map the colors that people take the most pictures of. The above for example, shows the common colors of Harvard Square. Why all the red? It's because there's so many brick buildings.

    So in the end is a map that provides a different geographic view of what we're used to seeing. We're used to seeing the aerials or the designer-defined color coding of roads and land. This however, while portrayed as a view from above, is what people are seeing on the ground.

  • This Would Be Perfect for a Roomba Commercial

    October 27, 2009  |  Mapping

    roomba

    You know the Roomba from iRobot? It's the robot vacuum cleaner that is supposed to do the work on its own so that you don't have to. I've seen video of the thing picking up dirt and junk but I've always been skeptical that it would cover all areas.

    Well the above, from Signal Theorist, is the Roomba coverage over a half an hour. A camera was setup, the lights were turned off, and the above is a long exposure shot of the Roomba's path. Not bad huh?

    [via Simple Complexity]

  • Failed Space Missions to Mars

    October 26, 2009  |  Infographics

    failures to Mars

    The above graphic shows missions to mars starting in 1960 to present (top to bottom). Paths are colored by country, and as you can see it's been a lot of missions from Europe and the United States lately. Obviously the farthest we've gone is with the rover with more to come.

    (I couldn't figure out where the graphic originally came from. Anyone know?)

    [via Fast Company | Thanks, Travis]

  • Information vs. Confusion

    October 23, 2009  |  Misc. Visualization

    card2282

    You gotta love Jessica Hagy. If you've got the skills you should be able to widen the valley in that curve significantly.

    Have a nice weekend all.

    [via Cool Infographics]

  • Open Thread: What the **** is Visualization Anyways?

    October 21, 2009  |  Discussion, Visualization

    I think ever since visualization got started, people have been asking this question.

    Some... okay, many describe it as purely an analytical tool. Others (i.e. me) are a little more liberal with their use of the term while the rest are somewhere in between. Some insist that the stuff we see on information aesthetics belong in an entirely different category and that that stuff isn't visualization at all.

    As art, science, design, statistics, computer science, etc. start to melt together, the line between what is and isn't visualization grows more blurry.

    What do you think? Is visualization only analytical? Can visualization be art? Are the infographics that frequent the front page of Digg visualization or are they just pretty pictures? Can visualization be just a pretty picture? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

  • How Much Do CEOs Make in the United States?

    October 20, 2009  |  Infographics

    transparency-winner

    GOOD magazine's most recent transparency contest asked designers to focus their powers on showing CEO compensation in the United States.
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  • When Twitter Says Good Morning Around the World

    October 19, 2009  |  Data Art

    Jer Thorp, an artist and educator from Vancouver, Canada, visualizes when people "wake up" on Twitter, or when they say good morning, rather. Here it is in its 3-d globe glory. It's called GoodMorning!. Notice the wave.

    Okay, wait, I know you're already furiously leaving or thinking about a comment on how absolutely useless and non-concrete this is - and Jer is the first to admit that - but there is obviously something to learn here.

    However, it's late, and I'm tired, so I'll leave that up to you. But off the top of my head, I'm thinking a more relevant subject like disease or need of help and color coding that's more meaningful. Your turn.

    [via datavisualization.ch]

  • An Addiction to Charts and Graphs

    October 16, 2009  |  Misc. Visualization

    Haha, Jason Segel is hilarious. In this episode of How I Met Your Mother Segel's character Marshall has an interesting addiction that I think many FD readers can relate to.
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  • One Life, One Stacked Area Chart

    October 15, 2009  |  Infographics, Self-surveillance

    life-chart

    Ben Fogarty uses a stacked area chart to represent his life. To us outsiders looking in it's not much more than that, but to Ben I am sure there is a story in every peak and valley. It's like a "this is your life" slideshow in data.

    This is the drive behind your.flowingdata. I don't think YFD is even remotely close yet to developing a personal narrative, but it's something to shoot for. I can imagine a lifetime of data replaying and watching it unfold like a movie. That'd be amazing. Then again, I might also end up like Jerry in Act 3 of Episode 88 in This American Life. Fingers crossed for the former.

    [via WeLoveDataVis]

  • The S&P 500 as a Planetary System

    October 13, 2009  |  Data Art

    stoc

    The Stock Ticker Orbital Comparison, or STOC for short, from media student James Grant, uses a planetary system metaphor to display activity with the S&P 500. Each circle represents a stock and they orbit a planet-like (or sun?) thing in the middle.
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  • You Are Not Allowed to Read this Book

    October 12, 2009  |  Mapping

    MappingBookCensorship2

    What would a freshman English class be without Of MIce and Men? No George or Lenny? People in Appomattox, Virginia seem to think it'd be just fine.

    The National Coalition Against Censorship, however, has different ideas on the matter. For the past couple of years the NCAC has confronted such bans and challenges from libraries and curricula. Above is a map of bans and challenges over from December 2006 to May 2009. Other notable works include The Golden Compass, Girl, Interrupted, and yes, brace yourself, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

    [via DataViz]

  • The Geography of Job Loss

    October 9, 2009  |  Mapping

    While on the topic of job loss and unemployment, here's an animated map from Tip Strategies that shows job gains and losses over time.

    Red means loss and green means gain, and as you can see above, there isn't much green (read that zero) on the map. The larger the circle is, the greater the number of net loss or gain compared to that of the numbers of the year before in the respective metropolitan statistical area.
    Continue Reading

  • Mass Layoffs by Industry

    October 9, 2009  |  Infographics

    layoffs

    As we all know, many people, much more than usual, have lost their jobs during the past few years. Visual Economics shows layoffs and changes in unemployment rate by industry over the last year. Obviously manufacturing has taken a huge hit along with construction.

    Health care and social assistance has also seen a lot of mass layoffs, but that one I don't really get. I've been under the impression there was high demand in that area. Maybe I'm wrong.

    In any case, one thing that I would definitely change in this graphic, other than getting rid of those out-of-place icons, is the percent change for unemployment rate.

    I thought to myself, "That bar for 2009 is over twice as tall and it's not even a 100% increase?" Then I realized they were percentage differences, which isn't as important the actual percent change of the rates.

    Then we'd see that the unemployment rate for manufacturing has increased over 140% and for construction it's gone up over 120%.

    [Thanks, Jason]

  • Trendsmap Shows Twitter Trends Geographically

    October 7, 2009  |  Mapping

    Twitter shows trending topics, but it's for the entire user base. You can only see what everyone on Twitter is talking about at any given time. Trendsmap, on the other hand, shows trending topics by location. See what's trending in any part of the world in real-time.
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  • Facebook Measures Happiness in Status Updates

    October 5, 2009  |  Statistical Visualization

    happiness-facebook

    As we all know, Facebook lets people update their friends with status updates, and with millions of users, that's a lot of data. Look at the aggregated data over time, and you could see some interesting trends.

    The Facebook Data Team recently measured happiness in the United States based on these updates with a metric they call United States Gross National Happiness.
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  • Google Acquisitions Subway Map

    September 29, 2009  |  Misc. Visualization

    google-acquisitions

    Tack another graphic to the growing list of subway map metaphors. Meet the Boss "maps" Google acquisitions and investments, color-coding tracks by industry. The maroon track, for example, represents video, hence YouTube, which also interconnects with advertising and web services.

    The design is nothing new (and kind of overdone), but the data are pretty interesting. I've never even heard of most of the acquisitions.

    Does anyone know who was the first to use the subway map metaphor?

    [via TechCrunch]

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