• Gauge Your Distraction While You Text and Drive in the Distracted Driving Game

    July 27, 2009  |  Infographics

    Picture 1

    From Gabriel Dance, Tom Jackson, and Aaron Pilhofer of the New York Times is this game to gauge your distraction while you're texting on the road. Yes. It's fun AND educational. Here's how it works.

    You're in a car with a driver's point of view. You're driving on a freeway or road with a ridiculous number of gates. There are six of them, and as you approach the gates, one will open, and you have select that open gate by pressing the right number. After a few seconds of practice, you'll receive a text message on the screen that asks a question. You have to reply while still selecting the correct gates as they pass.
    Continue Reading

  • Three Ingredients to Make the Perfect Business

    July 24, 2009  |  Misc. Visualization

    happy-business-588x592

    Thanks to Jessica Hagy and her Indexed project, we've seen lots of graphs and venn diagrams to communicate ideas outside of data. Some are bad and others are good. Here's one of the good ones. Bud Caddell shows what it takes to make the perfect business, or more generally, just about everyone's dream - to get paid for what you're good at and love to do. Get the poster version of the graphic here.

    [via dataviz]

  • Death and Taxes Poster 2010 – 50% Off for FlowingData Readers

    July 23, 2009  |  Infographics

    Jess Bachman of WallStats just released his annual Death and Taxes Poster for 2010. For those unfamiliar, the poster is a graphical breakdown of the United States federal budget.
    Continue Reading

  • Comparing the Human and Chimpanzee Genomes

    July 21, 2009  |  Infographics

    genome

    As part of the Explore Evolution exhibit at the University of Nebraska State Museum, Judy Diamond displays a segment of the human genome in line with that of the chimpanzee that matches very closely. The point is to show how similar two are with the few differences represented by a drawing of a man, distinguished geneticist Svante Paabo.
    Continue Reading

  • Why Are Cheap Airlines So Cheap?

    July 16, 2009  |  Infographics

    airlines

    5W Graphics, whose work you've seen by now, compares lower-cost airlines to "regular" airlines. The infographic is from the Spain group, so the focus is on Eurpoean airlines. Apparently the concept of low fair airlines (LFAs) is fairly new in Europe, only starting in 1990 with Ryanair while Southwest Airlines was founded in 1970. I'm more of a JetBlue guy myself. I cherish my legroom and in-flight entertainment.

    [via Cool Infographics]

  • How Does the Average Consumer Spend His Money?

    July 14, 2009  |  Infographics

    wheredidthemoneygo

    Add another graphic to the list of ways to show consumer spending. Visual Economics displays data from the most recent spending survey (April 2009) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Compare this to last year's survey results via an NYT interactive.

    The biggest difference I'm seeing is that between last year's spending on housing (42%) and this year (34%). Maybe that's why my mother-in-law keeps telling me it's a good time to buy a house. Do you notice anything interesting?

  • Explore World Data with Factbook eXplorer from OECD

    explorer

    The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) makes a lot of world indicators available (e.g. world population and birth rate). Much of it goes unnoticed, because most people just see a bunch of numbers. However, the Factbook eXplorer from the OECD, in collaboration with the National Center for Visual Analytics, is a visualization tool that helps you see and explore the data.

    Those who have seen Hans Rosling's Gapminder presentations - and I imagine most of us have - will recognize the style with a play button and a motion graph in sync with parallel coordinates and a map. Choose an indicator, or several of them, press play, and watch the visualization move through time.

    Also, if you've got your own data, you can load that too, which is certainly a nice touch.

    [via BBC News | Thanks, Lawrie & Liam]

  • Religious Teachings On Sex

    July 10, 2009  |  Infographics

    religion-sex

    This graphic on religious teachings and sex is making the social media rounds. The source is questionable and the design is a little iffy, but oh what the heck, it's Friday. Have a nice weekend all.

    [Thanks, Brian]

  • Health Care Costs Vary Widely By Region

    July 9, 2009  |  Mapping

    health-care

    No, this isn't a bad fungus spreading northwest towards Washington. This map from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (via MSNBC) shows health care costs across the country, and yes, you are included Hawaii and Alaska.

    As you can see health care costs are from uniform country-wide.

    However, the color scale is kind of funky. I'm guessing it was automatically chosen by the mapping software to even split the number of regions amongst the five color bins, which I think kind of throws off the color distribution. I don't know. I think as a whole, the map is missing some special sauce.

    [Thanks, Christopher]

  • Colored Tree, Cookies, and Stairs in Visualization Ad

    July 7, 2009  |  Data Art

    These ads for Hospital Alemán from Saatchi & Saatchi color code physical items for what parents say and what children do.

    TREE_HOSPITAL_COOKIES

    TREE_HOSPITAL_TREE

    It's not quantitative at all, and a lot of you probably won't even consider this visualization. It is pretty though, and I could see how this idea might be applied to data.

    [via I Believe in Advertising | Thanks, Ken]

  • Is the Economy Getting Ready to Turn Around?

    July 6, 2009  |  Economics, Infographics

    Is the economy going to turn around any time soon? How does this economic swing compare to previous cycles? Amanda Cox et al of the New York Times explores these ever so important questions in her recent nine-part interactive series.
    Continue Reading

  • Realtime Information Graphics Show International Data Interchange

    July 3, 2009  |  Mapping

    Zum Kuckuck, a design group in Germany, visualizes data interchange and network traffic with Processing in this beautifully executed installation.
    Continue Reading

  • X-Men Universe Relationship Map

    July 1, 2009  |  Network Visualization

    xmen universe

    Contrary to what a lot people might think they know from the movies, the X-Men universe stretches out quite a ways with lots of characters and lots of relationships. This super detailed relationship map for all X-Men characters from UncannyXmen shows just that.

    Connections are color-coded to show the type of relationship between a pair of characters. For example, green is a one-sided infatuation, pink is a flirtation by both parties, and a dashed line signifies one of the characters is from an alternative reality. Wolverine sure gets around.

    [via VizWorld]

  • Infographic Provides a Twitter History Lesson

    June 30, 2009  |  Infographics

    Manolith, in collaboration with InfoShots, tells the story of Twitter. The graphic starts at Twitter's humble beginnings and ends at present day where you pretty much can't go a day without hearing about that little bird. I wonder what this Twitter tree will look like next year.

    [via Techcrunch]

  • Michael Jackson Billboard Rankings: the Man, the Legend

    June 26, 2009  |  Statistical Visualization

    Say what you want about Michael Jackson, but there's no denying the great effect he had on the music world. In honor of the pop king's passing, practically half of The New York Times graphics department stayed up late last night building this graphic. It takes a look at his majesty's Billboard rankings over his career compared to other popular music artists.

    Decade after decade Jackson produced numerous hit albums. Click through time to see the mountains of each. Timeless.

    To the man, to the legend, who no one will ever be able to replace:

    [Thanks, Amanda]

  • Does this Calorie Intake Infographic Work? Not Really

    June 24, 2009  |  Infographics

    How long does it take to burn off the calories from a Big Mac and medium fries or a chocolate chip cookie? Petra Axlund of 5W Infographics shows with this infographic how long you have to exercise, after eating a certain item, to burn it all off.

    The red outside track shows the number of calories from the food item, while the inside tracks represent how long it takes for a male or female to burn off those calories with different exercises.

    Percentage Problem

    While creative, and as they say, visually appealing, it doesn't quite work technically speaking. The primary purpose of this graphic is to compare how long it takes to burn off the calories of a food item with different exercises. However, arc lengths are formed by percentage of an undefined whole, as opposed to count (in this case, calories on the outside and minutes out the outside).

    Okay, that last paragraph probably made no sense. Let's look at an example. This issue is most evident in pizza section. According to the graphic, it takes the average male 352 minutes to burn off a pepperoni pizza while it takes just 234 minutes to run it off. Therefore, the running arc for male should be about 2/3 the size of the walking arc if it were a bar chart.

    Instead we're comparing percentages, and the running arc sorta looks like it's about 3/4 the size of the walking arc. It'd probably look different if you were to roll out the arcs into bars, but that's too much brain power for me. I'm lazy like that.

    How it Could've Worked

    I think there's another way to make this graphic work other than making a bunch of bar charts. Instead of graphing minutes to burn off x amount of calories, show number of calories burned after x hours of exercise. It'd still be a little weird and less colorful, but it'd be more informative and easier to compare. It's mostly eye candy and a one-way reference as it is now.

    Gosh, I hate to be so critical, but it just doesn't work for me. What do you think?

    [via metrobest]

  • 20 Visualizations to Understand Crime

    June 23, 2009  |  Visualization

    fingerprintThere's a lot of crime data. For almost every reported crime, there's a paper or digital record of it somewhere, which means hundreds of thousands of data points - number of thefts, break-ins, assaults, and homicides as well as where and when the incidents occurred.

    With all this data it's no surprise that the NYPD (and more recently, the LAPD) took a liking to COMPSTAT, an accountability management system driven by data.

    While a lot of this crime data is kept confidential to respect people's privacy, there's still plenty of publicly available records. Here we take a look at twenty visualization examples that explore this data. Continue Reading

  • Business Valuation Calculator Like Trendalyzer With Style

    June 18, 2009  |  Economics, Infographics

    Inc.com just released their annual valuation guide for 2009, which allows business owners to gauge the value of their, uh, business. At the center of this guide is an interactive "business valuation calculator" by Tommy McCall. I guess the best way to describe the graphic is Trendalyzer with some style and added functionality.

    Each dot represents an industry and the position on the chart indicates whether the companies in that industry are priced high or low. Press the play button and watch how prices change between 2002 and now.

    Finally, if you've got a business of your own, enter your own values to for a custom value estimate.

    [Thanks, Sarah]

  • Abortion Rates in the United States, 1970-2005

    June 12, 2009  |  Mapping

    I've been working on my mapping skills lately in preparation for the first FlowingPrints poster, so when I came across this dataset for abortion rates in America, I had to map it.

    The darker the shade of green, the higher the number of reported abortions per 1,000 live births.

    New York has the highest rate with a whopping 507, which is a little over a third. That I'm not so sure about though. I'm thinking that there might be some high numbers in the '70s driving that rate up, but I'd have to look deeper into that. Wyoming, on the other hand, only had a reported 14 abortions between 1970 and 2005.

    In retrospect, the choice of green probably wasn't the best color choice, but seeing as this is just practice, I don't think it's a big deal.

    How I Made It

    In case you're wondering, I made the basemap in R using the maps and maptools packages. It was actually only 5 or 6 lines of code after I got the data how I wanted it. Then as I always do, I brought the PDF into Adobe Illustrator for some touch-ups and annotation.

    Check out the full version here.

    UPDATE: I revised the map using the Albers projection, so it doesn't look so funky. Of course, it was more difficult than originally thought. Tutorial to come.

  • Designing Interfaces for the Star Ship Enterprise

    June 9, 2009  |  Data Art

    We've all seen the new Star Trek by now. If you haven't, you should. There are amazing visuals throughout, especially on the bridge, where those aboard can just about interact with everything that can be touched. Albeit it's purely fictional and non-functional, but it's good to dream.

    OOOii, the group behind the beautiful board in Minority Report and the immersive technologies in The Island, is responsible for bringing the interfaces in Star Trek to life. Continue Reading

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