Information for a Visual Age

Archive for the ‘Infographics’ Category

Interactive Graphics: US Exports to Asia, 2011

In Asia, Infographics on March 15, 2012 at 2:08 pm

This appeared on Asia Matters for America.

US states exported $413 billion worth of merchandise to Asia in 2011, according to preliminary data released by the Commerce Department. We broke down the exports to four major Asian destinations – Japan, Korea, Australia and the ten countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) – to show which states are gaining the most from trade with Asia. Explore more in this interactive data graphic:

Click for full interactive graphic

California is the top exporting state to Japan, Korea and Australia, with combined exports of $25.2 billion in 2011. Computer and electronic products are the state’s leading exports to the three destinations, yet over the last five years the value of these exports has declined, by as much as a third to Korea. However, the state has increased its exports of manufactured food items – by more than double in the last five years to Korea and Australia – and more modest growth in the lucrative chemicals trade.

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Finances are simpler when drawn

In Infographics on August 12, 2010 at 2:30 pm

The New York Times has a clever feature by Carl Richards, The Sketchpad: Personal Finance on a Napkin, explaining finances with drawings on napkins. The image above may be my favorite. What’s yours?

A flowchart to explain Incepti…

In Infographics on August 10, 2010 at 9:49 am

A flowchart to explain Inception movie. Start the debate.

Decade in Review

In Infographics on December 31, 2009 at 10:05 am

Wow, you’ve got to see this. Phillip Niemeyer does an “Op-Chart” for the New York Times in which he illustrates the decade with 120 icons, arranged by year and theme.

NYTimes Year in Review graphic by Phillip Niemeyer 12/27/09

NYTimes Year in Review

The above is just a sample — click through to see the entire chart.

Balance of trade

In Asia, Infographics on December 24, 2008 at 11:24 am

And now a sneak peak into a project I’m working on right now. This is my first attempt at showing balance of trade between the United States and Asia.

US-Asia balance of trade

US-Asia balance of trade (click to enlarge)

I like the concept but I think it still needs some work. The data I have is only from one month but I’d prefer to have an entire year. I also want to be able to show some change over time. I could obviously have two stacked charts, but I’m thinking of other ways to show the change.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!

U.S. Exports to Asia

In Asia, Infographics on December 10, 2008 at 2:24 pm

This is an annotated map I produced for the Asia Matters for America website:

The lines in the map above represent U.S. merchandise exports to Asia, by U.S. state and Asian country in 2007. The thinnest lines represent exports of greater than U.S.$2.5 billion; mid-thickness lines, greater than $5 billion; thickest lines, greater than $10 billion.

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Animated graphs, part III

In Infographics on November 26, 2008 at 2:15 pm

This is a continuation of Animated graphs, part II

I’ve talked the last two weeks about a series of animated, interactive graphics used by Hans Rosling to illustrate the differences, and surprising similarities, between the global “haves” and “have nots.” The first week, I showed how a little animation can make great graphs. The second week, I analyzed Rosling’s progression from simple graphs — which give the audience a framework for understanding — to complex, nuanced analysis of reality. Rosling uses animation to build upon his previous graphs for a seamless interaction with the audience

In this final installment, I look at just the following slide, in which Rosling shows not only the child survival rate and GDP per capita for each of 200 countries in the world, but he also displays data by quintiles for five African countries.

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Animated graphs, part II

In Infographics on November 20, 2008 at 1:50 pm

This is a continuation of Animated graphs, part I

Last week I began an analysis of the images Hans Rosling uses in his presentation on the relationship between the global “haves” and “have nots.” In particular, his focus is on how people’s conceptions of the global North and global South (different terminology for the same concept of haves/have nots) may have been an accurate reflection of reality at one point in history, but may not be accurate today.

To make his case, he relies on a few sets of time-series data which he presents to great effect in some animated graphics. One thing that I like about Rosling’s work is that he start simple to get his audience to understand what he is talking about. Then he builds in data to make the presentation more accurate and nuanced.

For example, he presents a graph here that compares child survival rates with per capita income. Circles toward the top show better chances for survival, while circles toward the right show wealthier countries. Rosling adds a very helpful label (“good” and “bad” for health) to explain the “survival” scale, which some readers may find cryptic:

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Animated graphs, part I

In Infographics on November 13, 2008 at 4:07 pm

This is the first in a three part series

I happened across this video on the network. In it, professor Hans Rosling demonstrates a number of good practices in conveying information to an audience in an understandable and innovative fashion.

It’s also quite enjoyable to watch him really interact with his data. The whole video is viewable here. It’s about 20 minutes long but quite worth it. What follows are a series of screenshots that explain some of the highlights of his techniques for information display.

1. This screen shows child survival as a function of GDP per capita. In other words, it answers the question: is there a link between how much money you make and health? The answer, viewable inthe graph below, is a clear yes, indicated by the linear progression of countries up the right hand side of the graph.

This is a clear graph, showing a lot of data in an organized fashion: mortality rates, GDP per capita and country population (the size of the bubble) are all visible. Notice all this data is for one year, 1962.

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Election maps

In Infographics on November 6, 2008 at 3:37 pm

I’m writing this one day after what many Americans consider the most historic election in U.S. history. Elections provide an endless amount of data, and this was no exception. Particularly evident was the use of images to process data and extract trends.

For example, the following combination of graphics from shows the difference between the electoral votes in 2004 and 2008 (click for full size):

Election map comparison: 2004 and 2008

Election map comparison: 2004 and 2008

More after the break… Read the rest of this entry »