Chart like nobody is looking.
Okay, so this advice is definitely only useful for a small subgroup of people who make charts online. You should definitely consider your audience, because that drives what you need to show, how you want to show it, and what you need to explain.
But, for me, I try to chart like nobody is watching. Or at least, I imagine it’s a very small audience made up of a few close friends.
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FlowingData is a never-ending source of information, inspiration and instruction in data, visualization and design and Nathan Yau’s approach to exploring these subjects is both technical and familiar, somewhat similar to a discussion of a shared obsession over beers with a friend.
The tutorials are very helpful to move from "Oooo, cool!" to how to actually DO the cool.
…the inspiration I needed to start learning to code with a view to building more sophisticated and engaging data visualisations.