About

Randy Krum infographic designerRandy Krum

President of InfoNewt.
Data Visualization, Infographic Design, Visual Thinking, Product Development and Marketing professional fascinated by good infographics.  Always looking for better ways to get the point across.

SxSW 2016
Vote for my SxSW 2016 proposal
before September 4th!

Infographic Design

Infographics Design | Presentations
Consulting | Data Visualizations
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NEXT EVENT: August 27, 2015

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Caffeine Poster

The Caffeine Poster infographic

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Tuesday
Sep012015

How to Think Visually

How to Think Visually Using Visual Analogies infographic

How to Think Visually Using Visual Analogies infographic from Anna Vital gives a great variety of examples for anyone to use when you create your own graphics. It begins with the most recognizable visuals, circle graphs and diagrams. Further down are abstract analogies. They are reminiscent of physical objects, but they are simplified and abstract. Next, we have regular analogies that look like the physical objects you are familiar with. The final category are allegories. These are stories, or a series of analogies. The key is that these stories are familiar enough that we don’t have to retell them, but we should analogize every part of them.

Most research in cognitive science explores how we see things but little research is done on how we understand what we see.

Understanding is the ultimate test of how good your visualization is. So how can you make people understand? Show something familiar and analogize. If you know nothing else about visualization but pick the right analogy you are more than half way there. This is what a professional designer does - and there is no substitute for analogies.

How do you choose the right analogy? In this grid I organized analogies from the abstract down to the more detailed. I grouped them by similarity in shape. The goal is to enable you to quickly see the possibilities and “try them on” your information. With time you’ll be able to do all of this in your head. But for now this is a shortcut. 

As part of the infographic landing page, Anna has included a text description of each visual analogy. For the story on each graphic, read more at anna.vc

Thanks to @DR4WARD for sharing on Twitter!

Monday
Aug312015

What Exactly Is The "Internet of Things"?

What Exactly Is The "Internet of Things"? is a good infographic primer of the coming storm we call the IoT. Designed in partnership by both Postscapes and Harbor Research.

Over the last several years, stories of the technologies making up an Internet of Things have started to slip into public consciousness. As this is occurring, we believe the whole story of Smart Systems and the Internet of Things is not being told. Many of the dispatches coming in from the “front lines” of technology innovation are but fragments of a much larger narrative.

From our perspective, this story is not just about people communicating with people or machines communicating with machines. Smart, connected systems are a technological and economic phenomenon of unprecedented scale, encompassing potentially billions if not trillions of nodes -- an Internet of infinite interactions and values...

A couple suggestions for the infographic:

  • Include the URL of the infographic landing page in the infographic itself (usually in the footer) so readers can find the original, full-size version
  • The landing page include a Creative Common license statement, but that should be included in the infographic itself.

A high-resolution version is also available as a PDF download or broken aparts as a Slideshare presentaiton.

Tuesday
Aug252015

Strata+Hadoop World NYC 2015 Discount

Strata+Hadoop World NYC 2015 Discount

If you want to attend the Strata+Hadoop World conference in New York City on September 29-October 1, 2015, make sure you use the discount code "AFF20" for 20% off the registration price! This code is available to Cool Infographics readers as part of my partnership with O'Reilly and I want to make sure everyone knows it's available!

Last year the conference sold out, so don't wait too long!

Strata + Hadoop World is the biggest data conference in the world, and it shows. The agenda is packed—take a look at what's new:

  • New Keynotes—David Boyle, Katherine Milkman, Jeff Jonas, and Maciej Ceglowski (to name just a few).
  • Some training courses are already sold out—and many tutorials are filling up fast. (Hurry if you want to get in on Data 101, Spark Camp, Developing a Modern Enterprise Data Strategy, or Hardcore Data Science)
  • Industry sessions—financial services, media, health, music, social good: if you're in any of these industries, don't miss these sessions.
  • Cultivate Conference—learn how to lead through culture and transform your business, at Cultivate (Sept 28-29), co-located with Strata + Hadoop World.

Strata + Hadoop World is coming to NYC almost a month earlier this year, September 29-October 1. Make your plans today before it sells out again.

Strata+Hadoop World NYC 2015 Packages

Monday
Aug242015

The Spectrum of User Experience Design

The Spectrum of User Experience Design

The Spectrum of User Experience Venn Diagram came up again recently in a discussion with a client, and looking back I realized I had never posted it here on Cool Infographics. Designed in 2009 by Oliver Reichenstein at iA (Information Architects), this is one of those everlasting designs that is even more relevant and popular today than when it was designed.

Oliver posted about it's origins here

Can’t we just all get along? Or leave each other alone? We can’t. The product, the interface and the communication build on the tension between the economic, the technological and the design force.

The business department and the engineers need to agree on a product definition that guarantees high performance; engineers and designers need to work together to make the interface as simple as possible; and designers need to team up with the business folks to get the communication consistent.

Six years later and I still love it!

Friday
Aug212015

Visual Storytelling: The Big Trend for SXSW 2016

It’s only August, but voting is already underway for the March 2016 South By Southwest (SxSW) Interactive conference. Long thought of as the breeding ground for new ideas and creative technologies, we can gleam industry insights from the SXSW Interactive Festival. This year, I decided not to wait until the conference to delve into the veritable buffet of groundbreaking panels vying for festival space. This year’s PanelPicker interface received more than 4,000 proposals, which is an all-time record!

While a quick search of infographics yields only 11 results, a mere TWO actually have the word “Infographics” in the title. The industry discourse has shifted away from “how-to” models to “how to do it right.” Infographics have become a key format of the larger conversation: Visual Storytelling.

A quick search for “Visual Storytelling” yields over 200 talks in PanelPicker, along with hundreds more for “data visualization” and “visual content”.  Infographics are now used as one of many effective tools in the Marketer’s toolbox, and an accepted part of the larger conversation happening in the content marketing industry.

Visual storytelling is vital to content marketing success. The following types of visual content are at the forefront of the proposals for next year’s SXSW Interactive Festival.

1.    Animated GIFs

Source: Animagraffs by Jacob O'Neal

The social media world has been slow to adopt GIFs, with Facebook only just embracing the truncated clips this year. The average human attention span in 2015 is 8.25 seconds, so these bite-sized animations are the perfect for telling a complete story in a short amount of time. The motion in the image also captures attention on an already crowded news feed.

Check out these GIF-centric presentations, “Why GIFs are turning into the New Emojis on Mobile” and “Visual Storytelling - GIFs, Graphs, and Napoleon.


2.    Visual Presentations

Slideshare and other presentation-style platforms provide a visual and interactive way to share lots of information. With millions of visitors per month, Slideshare is an easy way to have your presentations seen by a large audience.

Perfect your visual presentations with “Sucking Less When Presenting Creative” and “The Power of Poise: Chi for Pitch and Presentation.”     

 

3.     Real-time storytelling

Real-time storytelling has increased in popularity with the rise of live feed social platforms like Periscope and Meerkat. The ease of execution and the sheer scope of the audience made these two platforms instantly successful. While Meerkat took the prize for most buzzed app at last year’s SXSW, Periscope has the weight of Twitter behind it and has become the more successful of the two.

Use these two tools to live broadcast your events, host a Q&A, or even share professional tips to a larger audience. Perfect your live-streaming with the “Live Streaming Killed Cable TV Star” and “Igniting Creativity with Periscope” PanelPicker proposals.

Twitter Periscope

Source: AdWeek

 

4.    Infographics

I couldn’t get through my list without mentioning infographics. Still one of the best ways to convey complex information in a shareable and visually appealing format, infographics should be worked into your content marketing strategy. While they are no longer the only way to tell a visual story, they remain a marketing industry staple.

Round out your visual storytelling prowess with great infographics. Learn how to rock your next infographic with my own proposal, “7 Deadly Sins of Infographics Design and How to Fix Them.

The Process of Designing an Infographic

 

Source: Visme 

Buzzword or not, visual storytelling is something we’ve all been doing since we first snapped a picture with a polaroid camera, we’re just getting better at it. Judging by PanelPicker entries alone, the 2016 SXSW Interactive Festival will be another great year for the content marketing industry.

Friday
Aug212015

I Will Survive! A Guide to Survival and Pocket Knives

I Will Survive! A Guide to Survival and Pocket Knives infographic

I Will Survive! A Guide to Survival and Pocket Knives is an infographic that can be helpful for both first timers and frequent buyers of knives.  This infographic can help you pick out the perfect knife based on your potential use of it. Whether it is a survival knife or pocket knife, there are certain features that you should keep in mind.

Whether you’re planning a camping trip, or just like to be prepared, a survival knife is a crucial tool to have. It can be used to cut, dig, split, and pry, to name just a few functions, and its compact, pocket-sized exterior makes it easy to bring with you anywhere you go.

There are multiple options when it comes to survival knives. A fixed blade knife is the most reliable; knives that have a bending joint tend to be weaker. Look for a knife with a full tang. These knives are safer because the blade and the handle are constructed from one continuous piece of metal.

Stainless steel blades are stronger and do not rust as quickly as carbon steel. However, carbon steel knives keep a good edge longer. Regardless of the steel you choose, aim for a solid knife that is between 3/16 to 4/16 of an inch thick.

Unlike a survival knife, a pocket knife tends to have multiple tools. The three most common types are jack, pen, and multi-purpose knives. A jack knife is the most basic of the three, usually consisting of one blade, and a simple hinge. A pen knife has between 2-3 blades and hinges at both ends of the handle. The tools on a multi-purpose knife vary, but the most popular functions include a can opener, scissors, and a screwdriver.

Whether you’re looking for a heavy-duty survival knife or an everyday pocket knife, consult this guide to pick the best one for your needs!

The infographic uses a good balance of words and appropriate graphics to help relay the information well. For the icons and illustrations, I would like to see stronger visuals to help differentiate the good features from the bad.

This infographic appears to have been created by FIX, but it's not clear if the other sites listed Art Of Manliness and Survival Cache were involved in the design or just the sources of information.

Found on Lifehacker

Tuesday
Aug182015

The State of the Social Marketing Team

The State of the Social Marketing Team infographic

The State of the Social Marketing Team is an infographic from a survey that SimplyMeasured put together and shared in the full 2015 State of Social Marketing report. This is the right way to use an infographic as the visual summary of deeper content hidden behind a registration wall.

Many companies are still trying to figure out how to tackle social media. They’re constantly asking themselves questions like, “Where should social media live in our organization?,” “How big should my team be?,” or “How should our social media team be built?”

To help address this common issue, we surveyed over 350 social media marketers about their team structures and compiled our findings into this infographic! More information from the survey (as well as a separate look at the pain points these marketers face), download a complimentary copy of our 2015 State of Social Marketing Report.

This is a really good infographic. Packed with good information and keeps the design simple and to the point. My only issue with the design is that some of the text is small and in light colors that are hard to read against the white background.

I noticed that SimplyMeasured posted the original infographic on SlideShare and then posted it in their blog by using the SlideShare infographic wrapper for sharing. SlideShare introduced the Infographics Player in 2013, but I haven't seen many people using it. The potential advantage is that most of the view metrics from mutliple sites are combined together in SlideShare. The potential disadvantge is that people go to SlideShare to view your infographic and never make it to your website. 

Found on MarketingProfs

Monday
Aug172015

I Need Your Votes for SxSW 2016

7 Deadly Sins of Infographics Design and How to Fix Them

7 Deadly Sins of Infographics Design and How to Fix Them

 

SXSW 2016 Interactive PanelPicker voting is now open, and I need your votes! My talk proposal entitled "7 Deadly Sins of Infographics Design and How to Fix Them" will explore examples of the top seven mistakes designers often make, and more importantly, offer design tips to overcome these common design blunders. Follow the steps below to vote:

Step 1: Go to PanelPicker to view my proposal.
Step 2: Log in or create an account.
Step 3: Give my proposal the thumbs up to vote!
Step 4: Post a comment (SXSW loves this).
Step 5: Share with your friends on social media.

 

I've only given this talk once before at the Malofiej Infographics World Summit in Spain, and I'm scheduled to present it at the Big Design Dallas conference in September. (Come join me if you're in the Dallas area!)

Community voting is a large part of the PanelPicker process, so I'm reaching out to you for your support. Please vote before September 4th!

For more information on my talk, please visit Slideshare for a preview.

Thanks for your help!

Thursday
Aug132015

Android Fragmentation Visualized

Android Fragmentation Visualized

This one data visualization can demonstrate why mobile responsive web design is important: Android Fragmentation Visualized. OpenSource published a number of data visualizations, both static and interactive, that show the tremendous market fragmentation in the market of Android phones and devices. This treemap shows market share by device.

Fragmentation is both a strength and weakness of the Android ecosystem, a headache for developers that also provides the basis for Android’s global reach. Android devices come in all shapes and sizes, with vastly different performance levels and screen sizes. Furthermore, there are many different versions of Android that are concurrently active at any one time, adding another level of fragmentation. What this means is that developing apps that work across the whole range of Android devices can be extremely challenging and time-consuming.

Despite the problems, fragmentation also has a great number of benefits – for both developers and users. The availability of cheap Android phones (rarely running the most recent version) means that they have a much greater global reach than iOS, so app developers have a wider audience to build for. Android is successfully filling the gap left behind by the decline of Nokia’s Symbian – and in this report we look at the different shape of fragmentation in countries from different economic positions, as a way of showing that fragmentation benefits Android much more than it hurts it. Android is now the dominant mobile operating system and this is because of fragmentation, not in spite of it.

Here you can see the same treemap reorganized into brand clusters, still sized by market share:

Android Fragmentation Visualized

The hundreds of different Android screen sizes can be seen in this visualization:

In contrast, Apple currently only has FIVE devices and screen sizes for phone and tablets, but uses the same screen resolution on a couple of them:

Found on Business Insider

Wednesday
Jul292015

The Science Behind Creating Buyer Personas

The Science Behind Creating Buyer Personas infographic

The Science Behind Creating Buyer Personas infographic from WSI does a good job explaining why personas are way more than just demographic information. Too many companies don't dig deep enough when creating buyer personas to really understand their customers' decision making process.

A buyer persona can be one of the most powerful tools in helping you devise effective marketing strategies.

Wikipedia defines a buyer persona as “fictional characters created to represent the different user types that might use a site, brand, or product in a similar way.”

The process and resulting personas are particularly useful for businesses who recognize the value of content-marketing. The secret of content marketing is hiding in plain site: if you want your business to be found by prospective clients, referred by existing clients, lauded by critics, you need to start by creating great content that they will want to read.

Personas are a great foundation to identify the topics that are of interest, and the voice you should use to communicate them.

This infographic is a fun way of looking at how to go about this process. It isn’t easy, but it is extraordinarily valuable!

Sometimes infographics tell stories about concepts or processes instead of large data sets or statistics. This one uses icons and illustrations to help marketers understand how complicated building buyer personas can be.

Oddly, the infographic appears to be hosted on the MarketingProfs website instead of WSI. I couldn't find an original infographic landing page from WSI.