Infographic Design

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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.

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Entries in design (414)

Monday
Feb272012

iPad3: USA in anticipation of the new iPad

Anticipation is building strong momentum expecting the release of the next iPad from Apple in the near future.  Ask You Target Market (AYTM.com) is an online survey service, and they gathered data from a couple of their own surveys to compile the iPad3: USA in anticipation of the new iPad infographic.

The rumor is that the iPad 3 announcement will come in the first week of March, but doesn’t specify when it will be released. For reference, the iPad 2 was announced on March 2nd of last year, and available on the 11th.

There are some significant changes expected and to gain a better understanding on the current state of the American consumers’ current iPad usage and anticipation of the iPad 3, AYTM conducted DIY market research utilizing our online consumer panel and survey tool. The highlights of our discoveries are encapsulated in this infographic:

This Infographic is based on a survey of 2000 Americans who don’t own an iPad (request full stats report by e-mailing us: support [at) aytm.com) and another survey of 500 iPad owners (open full stats report) that we’ve collected for you on aytm.com in February 2012.

A few thoughts about the design:

  • I like the idea to that each fingerprint on the iPad to represents 100,000 people, but because it’s a data visualization, the different sizes of the fingerprints makes you think that the size has meaning when it really doesn’t.  It was so subtle, I initially missed the number 3 reversed in the fingerprints.
  • In the “What could Apple do” section, the illustrations do help give meaning to each of the statistics, but because the numbers are all in the text, their impact is lost.  These values should have been visualized.
  • The model distribution is clear, and easy to understand.  For the Models breakdown, I really like the use of the pie chart to represent two levels of data.  Primary is the size, and the secondary level is the WiFi vs. 3G split.
  • I really like the 3G satisfaction breakdown.  Very easy to understand.
  • Great use of the logos and colors in the Carrier split data.  Orange isn’t in the AT&T logo, but is a very dominant color on their website, and Verizon got a red bar to match their logo and primary website color.
  • The Family trees are hard to understand and the 1.7x visualization isn’t clear.
  • I’m not sure why they picked area charts for the apps visualizations.  That’s really the wrong type of visualization for the data since these are all supposed to add up to 100% of users.
  • The male vs. female bar charts work well, and are easy to understand.  I appreciate that they were consistent with the female number always first, and of course the color-coding work perfectly.
  • “Where iPads are used” is really just an illustration, and doesn’t visualize the percentages at all.  I simple stacked bar under the illustrations (like the carriers above) would have worked nicely.
  • Surpirisingly, I really like the use of word clouds here.  You don’t need the specific numbers, and the word cloud visualization makes the point well because the top responses are so overwhelming.
  • I love that they gave credit to the designer, Lev Mazin!  It doesn’t hurt that he’s the CEO and Co-founder of AYTM.com, but happens to also be a graphic designer.

Only one thing missing at the bottom: the URL to find the original infographic.

Found on Mashable

Friday
Feb242012

See Mix Drink: Infographic Cocktails

The See Mix Drink Cocktail Guide is a fabulous infographic drink recipe book from Brian D. Murphy (@murph_e).  Currently available for about $10 on Amazon.com, it’s on my wish list.  Featured on GQ.com back in October when it was released, I have been totally remiss by not posting about it until now.  (My apologies Brian!)

Have you tried mixing a Mojito? What about a Rusty Nail? Or a Cosmopolitan? With See Mix Drink, the first-ever cocktail book to offer instruction through info-graphics, making the drinks you love at home is as easy as, well, See, Mix, Drink.

This unique, illustrated guide graphically demonstrates how to make 100 of today’s most popular cocktails. For each drink, color-coded ingredients are displayed in a line drawing of the appropriate glassware, alongside a pie chart that spells out the drink’s composition by volume for intuitive mixing. No other cocktail book is this easy or fun. Instantly understandable 1-2-3 steps show exactly how each drink is prepared, and anecdotes, pronunciation guides, and photographs of the finished drinks will turn newbie bartenders into instant mixologists. 

The GQ.com feature has the designs for ten of the recipes from the book.  They are all simple to understand, and easy to follow.

One thing I would suggest to improve the visualization design style is to combine the key and the ingredient portions.  No need to make the reader look to both sides of the glass illustration to figure out how much of each ingredient.  Just putting the name with the amount on the left side and getting rid of the color key would eliminate an eye motion for the readers.

Thanks to Brian for sending in the link (back in October!) and congratulations on the publication!

Friday
Feb172012

Shutterstock Global Design Trends 2011

The Global Design Trends 2011 infographic from Shutterstock shares some of the image usage data that only they have due to the nature of their business.

After 8 years, 17 million images and over 200 million downloads, Shutterstock has become one of the world’s leading marketplaces for visual media. We have artists and photographers from more than 100 countries, and customers in more than 150. But perhaps most significant about these milestones is that it has led to tens of thousands of image searches each day – giving us valuable insight into design trends around the world.

From vintage-themed photographs, to vibrant vector graphics, here’s an infographic detailing what visual stories were told over the last year.

I love that Shutterstock has some unique data internally that they are analyzing in aggregate and now sharing with the world.  It’s not complicated, but I love that they actually included some of the most downloaded images in the design.  They are showing the reader what was popular instead of just telling the reader about it.  My favorite section is the Evolving Visual Vocabulary showing how the meaning of the image keywords is changing over time.

They made a couple unusual publishing choices.  The image posted on the blog is 714px wide (an odd number) so the small text is blurry and pixelated.  I don’t think they have enough detailed data in this design for a zooming viewer, but if you click on the image from their blog post, it takes you to the full 3,300 pixel wide image loaded into Zoom.it.  They also link to the high-resolution JPG image file, and (a great idea!) a lightbox on Shutterstock that includes all of the images highlighted in the infographic.

A handful of statistics are just listed in text instead of visualized like they should be: 150 countries, 16 million downloads, 6 million downloads, 5 million downloads, etc.

A couple standard things missing that a lot of designers seem to consistently miss: a copyright statement, the URL for readers to find the original infographic landing page (the specific blog post on Shutterstock in this case), and a credit mention for the designer (Shutterstock is all about designers!).  I hope the team at Shutterstock paid the license fes for using these images in their infographic design!  No need for a Sources statement, since all of the data comes from their own site server data.

Thanks to Aaron for sending in the link!

Monday
Feb062012

Infographic Events Calendar 2011-2012

Outstanding calendar-map infographic from Infographer.ru, a Russian infographics site and design agency in Moscow (view in English).  The Infographic Events Calendar 2011-2012 shows many (but not all) visualization, data and infographic conferences and events around the globe.

For everyone who is interested in information design we prepared the events calendar. We found over 44 conferences and workshops, dedicated to infographics and visualization topic all over the world.

The idea to make this kind of ‘map-calendar’ of events appeared in our mind a long time ago, we started to collect data in 2011 and suddenly 2012 started. So we decided to combine both years and show the history for 2011 and actual events for 2012, which you can use for your personal planning.

They collected over 40 conferences and workshops dedicated to information visualization for last year and the upcoming schedule for 2012.  The calendar-map color codes the events by month and obviously connects them to the correct location on the world map.

If you know any corrections or additions to the event included, please post them in the comments!  I know they will be reading them, and would welcome all feedback.  Here are a few events I think they should add to their list:

  • South by Southwest Interactive, Austin, TX, March 9-13, 2012
  • TDWI World Conference (Tableau), Las Vegas, NV, February 13-15, 2012
  • Big Data 2012, Paris, France,  March 20-21, 2012

I like the text of the city name included in the connecting lines, and the months with no events are gray so they don’t add to the visual noise of the bright colors.  Somewhere on the design they should have included the URL for people to find their original posting.  When this get shared online, readers will have a hard time finding the original site.

Infographer also posted some behind-the-scenes information about the development of the design.  Check out their early drafts in the complete blog post.

Thanks to Irina for sending in the link and posting the English translation of the development process!

Tuesday
Jan312012

The Psychology of Color

The Psychology of Color is a cool infographic from CertaPro Painters of Louisville.

This new infographic from CertaPro Painters of Louisville shows how color evokes emotion and triggers your senses. It beautifully explores colors that should and should not be used in interior decorating, as well as why certain colors are used in advertising.

Designed by NowSourcing.com, I love the visual appeal of this design.  Obviously, it’s bright and colorful, but in all three sections of the layout (home, colors and advertising) they provide visual examples to back up their observations about different colors. I would love to have a house that colorful!

There is much more information on this subject, but this design also kept the information fairly simple and straightforward.  The colors make the design very “busy”, but the design doesn’t try to communicate too much information to the reader.

The design is missing the URL to find the original landing page, and a copyright statement.  I also found it odd that they needed to clarify that M&Ms are “an American Chocolate Candy”.  Aren’t M&Ms an international brand?

Thanks to Jay for sending in the link!  Also found on Infographic Journal.

Tuesday
Jan242012

The Cool Infographics 2011 Gallery...A Pinterest Experiment

 

Check out the Cool Infographics 2011 Gallery!  I’m trying an experiment using Pinterest to create a one-page, visual gallery of the infographics I post.  On this board I have pinned every post from the Cool Infographics blog from last year, and it makes a really nice, visual way to browse through the infographics I have shared.  One of the reasons I wanted to play around with Pinterest is that it displays the entire (sometimes very long) infographic, not just a square thumbnail like many galleries.

In general, I keep the 10 most current posts on the front page of the blog.  Once they scroll off the front page, of course their traffic and visibility drops off dramatically.  I’m looking for a way to create a live, growing gallery of the infographic images so these great examples of design can continue to be easily discovered.

Because infographics is, by definition, a visual media, I think people would be more likely to find examples they like and inspiration for their own type of design if there was a better way to browse.  I’m not sure that Pinterest is the answer yet, but it’s certainly worth trying.  On the down-side, I haven’t been able to integrate the Pinterest PinIt button into the blog along with the other social sharing buttons.  Their button doesn’t seem to work with the Squarespace platform I use for the blog.

I am absolutely looking for feedback, so please leave your thoughts in the comments.

Cheers!

Wednesday
Jan182012

The Manual Photography Cheat Sheet

The Manual Photography Cheat Sheet by Miguel “Mig” Yatco is a very cool infographic for anyone who is ready to move off of Automatic Mode on their camera!  Yes, that means you!  Quit taking average photos with average settings!

No matter if you shoot with film or digital, understanding of these four aspects of photography are key to taking good shots.  I love how each one shows the reader the range of values, the impact of moving along the range to the pcitures and what the actual display looks like in the viewfinder on both Nikon and Canon cameras.

The only thing I would have liked to see was a visualization of the changes to depth of field.  How much range is in focus for each aperture setting?

Miguel has prints available on Zazzle.com.  You can buy a printed as a poster for $50, or as small as a 4”x6” card to carry around with you.  The standard size available is 23”x34.5”, but I wish the standard poster size was 24”x36” to fit in standard poster frames.

Great job Miguel!

Monday
Jan162012

Learning to Love Tennis

Learning to Love Tennis is a cool infographic describing the major changes within the USTA’s rules for kids playing tennis.  Designed by Digital Surgeons, the infographic visualizes some the biggest changes like court sizes, raquet sizes and net height.  Also, including things like comparing the calorie burn of different sports help show the reader why tennis is such a great sport for kids.

The game of tennis has been scaled for youth play.  To date, tennis has been the only major sport without equipment and field of play dimensions specific to children.  By introducing smaller and lighter racquets, balls with different compression ratios, lower nets and scaled court sizes, kids can begin playing and competing earlier.  Earlier participation and play increases engagement and reduces frustration associated with using adult-sized racquets that kids find clunky and heavy, or court sizes that are simply too large for children to effectively navigate.  Far too many of our country’s youth are huddled around the TV or tethered to a video game controller.  These new rules provide the means to get kids off the couch and engage in an activity that they can continue for life.

Overall, I really like this design.  The style is eye-ctaching and information is laid out in an easy-to-read manner.  I like most of the visuals, and there are only a couple things I would change:

  • The grid of 30 kid icons showing 70% of Kids Quit Sports isn’t accurate.  The visual is 22/30 kids , which is 73.3%  This type of visual always works better as a grid of 100.  Don’t make your readers count icons to figure out what you’re showing them.  Rows of 6 are just odd, and tought to understand.
  • One of the biggest differences is the new balls used by different ages.  It would have been nice to visualize the difference in bounce for each ball to help the reader understand.
  • The Average Height, Stride Comparison and Average Weight is lost in the design, because it’s all text.  In an infographic that makes it less important and the reader just skips over that section.
  • At the bottom should be the URL to the official landing page so readers can find the original infographic.

This is a really huge initialative for the USTA, and the new rules are complicated to understand for parents.  An infographic is a fantastic way to simplify their message, and I think this will help them out a lot.

Thanks to Pete for sending in the link!

Wednesday
Jan112012

Calendar Visualization of Fatal Car Crashes

I really like this data visualization from Nathan Yau at FlowingData.comVehicles Involved in Fatal Crashes 2010 takes a new look at the statistics released by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  Instead of plotting them on a traditional map, Nathan looked at the time data.

After seeing this map on The Guardian, I was curious about what other data was available from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association. It turns out there’s a lot and it’s relatively easy to access via FTP. What’s most surprising is that it’s detailed and fairly complete, with columns for weather, number of people involved, date and time of accidents, and a lot more.

The above shows vehicles involved in fatal crashes in 2010 (which is different from number of crashes or number of fatalities). This data was just released last month, at the end of 2011 oddly enough. It’s a calendar view with months stacked on top of one another and darker days indicate more vehicles involved.

- Nathan Yau

As was suggested by others in the comments on FlowingData, I agree that since the weekends have the higher incidence rate, starting the week with Monday and moving Sunday to the last column may show that a little bit clearer.

Nathan has made all of the data avaialble for anyone that would like to try a visualization themselves.  Student project?

Monday
Jan092012

An Intimate Look at Infographics

An Intimate Look at Infographics is a fun, satirical look at infographics from Think Brilliant that comes in the form of an infographic!

A well done infographic has the power to capture one’s acute attention span and convey information that would have taken longer to simply read (oh no, not reading!). However, for every brilliantly thought out and well executed mashup of art and data, there now seems to be an influx of mundane and formulaic counterparts infesting the very internet that we hold so near and dear.

Here we have an infographic that explores commonalities between the seemingly vast expanse of contrived infographics that appear to have spawned in mass over the past year. If you’re an infographic purest, view at your own risk.

This one is not new, but it did make me smile!

Thanks to David for sending in the link!