Where I had proposed to map a history of political knowledge over time not that long ago, I have decided to switch gears and go for a dataset that is more easily defined and quantifiable. So from Marx, Hegel, and Socrates, I go to Flamengo, Fluminense, and Vasco da Gama: I have decided to use the 38 rounds of the 2007 Brazilian National Club League Soccer Division 1 Championship.Here are a few beginning mockups…

an early version using a line graph and points obtained as the scale

an early version using a line graph and the relative ranking of the teams as the scale

the latest version which will be a bar graph of the rounds, added successively

the first version of the data mapped per team, per round

data mapped per team, per round – closer to the proper size

What started as an exercise in database sanitizing, wound up a stop animation movie done in photoshop. This project illustrates well the dangers of setting one’s goals beyond what is feasible. Originally I had intended to export an Excel database into XML so that I could put a Flash interface on it. That didn’t work out. Then I figured I would put the interface up on a dummy set of data. But when I found myself putting Actionscript on a button inside a movie clip inside a button, where there were going to be a trillion different combinations by the time I was going to be finished with it, I gave up and decided to go with something I could actually achieve by the deadline. More on what I was trying to do with this in a later post, for now, I give you, a (sigh) failed visualization.Mad MAD Project

For the second week of class, we were meant to bring in an example of a visualization that we think works, and one that perhaps does not work so well, and be prepared to critique both. I’ll start with the successful example: Human Trafficking Worldwide.

Human Traffic Visualization Medium

(full image:1745 X 2049)


The horizontal line across the middle of the image serves as the key: it informs you of many variables at once: the nation name, the inner ring (incidence of smuggling into the country), and the outer ring (incidence of smuggling out of the country)


1) Nations & Continents: nations are arranged by continent (labels are the large CAPITALS on the outside of the image) and organized alphabetically therein; nations are represented by each individual spike and labeled in the dark ring separating the inner area from the outer area.

2) Extent of Export Smuggling Occuring: This variable ranges on a 5-point scale (Very Low, Low, Medium, High, Very High), depicted both in color (deep blue = very low), as well as length of the spike (the longer the protrusion away from the black ring in the middle, the higher the incidence of trafficking)

3) Extent of Import Smuggling Occuring: This variable also ranges on a 5-point scale (Very Low, Low, Medium, High, Very High), also depicted both in color (deep blue = very low), as well as length of the spike (albeit the direction of the protrusion is reversed, ie the higher the incidence of trafficking into the country, the bigger the spike pointing towards the middle of the circle)

Less Successful Data Visualization:

This is a graphic I found on a productivity website. It is a thorough attempt to decipher which communications platform (email, instant messaging, video conferencing, etc) is best suited for which set of constraints (employees located in the same space, response required, etc). Here it is:

Communication Decision Tree

The virtue of this diagram is that it manages to pin down into a series of binaries (yes/no questions) whether one course of action is appropriate over another, so it avoids excessive branching.

The major drawback of this diagram is that there is no clear definition of the logic of the arrangement of the relative technologies. Specifically, it might make more sense to render it in such a manner that the end points were oriented to one side, with the continuations off to another, such that one can more readily observe the a pattern in the increasing specificity.

just to make sure that the categories will display like they’re sposed to.

© 2011 'Tis Educational Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha