David McCandless – Information is Beautiful

David McCandless – Information is Beautiful

McCandless speaks to the power of visualization to compress data for comprehension – a timely topic for a world of relentless, daily information flow.

I love data visualization aka information design. Done well, it’s aesthetic, thought provoking, and behavior changing. I was pleased that this week’s Is One Life Enough class assignment was to watch a video recorded presentation by the London-based, award-winning data journalist and information designer, David McCandless.

The presentation by McCandless is outstanding.

Hosted at TED 2010 Oxford, it follows the standard “give the best talk of your life in 20 minutes” format. The examples he gives are brilliant – the Billion Dollar-o-Gram, for example, shows what the world spends its money on and the relative size of the financial crisis.

After watching a second time, peering closely at his diagrams by video, I looked up McCandless’ Information is Beautiful website and found the diagrams from the presentation, in full resolution.

My favorite visualizations include Left vs. Right, a socio-political concept comparison, and Snake Oil, a “balloon race” presentation of scientific evidence for health supplements. Included are the sources for the data. And if politics and health don’t interest you, there are some 20 other examples including, The Varieties of Intimate Relationship and Wikipedia’s Lamest Edit Wars.

McCandless speaks to the power of visualization to compress data for comprehension – a timely topic for a world of relentless, daily information flow.

Left vs. Right (US) – by David McCandless

leftright_US_1416

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