Blog Archives

New Series: ISOTYPE Books

January 16, 2017
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New Series: ISOTYPE Books

Presenting facts through data is not a recent idea. Otto and Marie Neurath created ISOTYPE in the 1920s and then ran their ISOTYPE Institute for more than two decades. During that time, they created charts for a wide variety of publications. In this series, I will show a number of these charts that I have […]

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Posters Program for Tapestry 2017

January 11, 2017
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Posters Program for Tapestry 2017

The Fifth Tapestry conference for storytelling with data is only about six weeks away. To make it easier for academics and students to attend, we are adding a more formal posters program this year. We’re looking for posters about all kinds of topics around storytelling with data: ideas for story structures impact of stories, how […]

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A Roundup of Year-End News Graphics Roundups

December 30, 2016
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A Roundup of Year-End News Graphics Roundups

The end of the year is always a good time to look back at the great work done in the world of news graphics – and this year in particular, to relive all the heartbreak and disillusionment. Here is a list of year-end news graphics round-ups for your enjoyment and edification. The New York Times, 2016: […]

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The Dumbest User Interface of 2016

December 27, 2016
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The Dumbest User Interface of 2016

It is my great honor and pleasure to announce the winner of the Worst User Interface Award 2016: it goes to the new chip-enabled credit card terminals introduced in the U.S. this year. My congratulations, as it is very well deserved. It is not often that a new user interface is so obviously annoying and […]

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When Rankings Are Just Data Porn

December 19, 2016
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When Rankings Are Just Data Porn

Rankings are a common way of talking about data: who made the most money, who won the most medals, etc. But they hide issues in the underlying data. Is the difference between first and second meaningful or just noise? Here is a data video that nicely demonstrates the problem. Watch the first few minutes of […]

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The EagerEyes Holiday Shopping Guide

December 7, 2016
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The EagerEyes Holiday Shopping Guide

Are you looking for the perfect gift for the data or visualization geek in your life? Did that crazy self-driving water bottle Kickstarter still not deliver, leaving you hunting for an overpriced Nintendo Classic? The EagerEyes Holiday Shopping Guide has all the geeky, uncool gifts you could possibly want. To be clear, none of the […]

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Review: Jon Schwabish, Better Presentations

November 30, 2016
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Review: Jon Schwabish, Better Presentations

Presentations can be dreadful. Badly thought-out slides, boring structure, poorly delivered. I once told a colleague after a practice talk to please shoot me before she’d ever make me sit through such a talk again (to be fair, she had called the talk boring herself before she even began). Instead of suffering through more bad presentations, Jon […]

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The Problem with Vis Taxonomies

November 28, 2016
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The Problem with Vis Taxonomies

Most taxonomies in visualization and HCI are useless. They carve up the space, but they don’t provide new insights or make predictions. Designing a useful taxonomy is a difficult problem, but that's no excuse for publishing lots of mediocre ones. A Taxonomy of Taxonomies Taxonomies organize the world. They’re best known from biology, where animals and […]

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RJ Andrews’ Profiling the Parks

November 21, 2016
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RJ Andrews’ Profiling the Parks

RJ Andrews has created a great little video about the National Parks in the U.S. Have you ever thought about how the different parks compare? Which one is wider, which one is deeper, which one's at higher or lower elevation? I love the hand-drawn images and based on real data, and the way the zooming in and […]

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Dealing with Paper Rejections

November 14, 2016
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Dealing with Paper Rejections

For some reason, the topic of reviewing and getting papers rejected came up several times in conversations at VIS recently. Getting your work rejected and learning to deal with rejection is part of life as an academic, and it’s worthwhile to think about the process a bit. I’m basing this on a nice piece by Niklas […]

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