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.

Infographic Design

Looking for help creating your own infographics?  Randy’s infographic and data visualziation design company:

InfoNewt Infographic Design

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Entries in design (406)

Tuesday
Feb262013

Manhattan Building Heights as Land Value

Manhattan Building Heights infographic

Manhattan Building Hieghts by radicalcartography.net is an indirect measure of land value based on building height. The infographic is shaped like Manhattan itself, and the actual building’s color darkness shows their heights in their correct locations.

You can also see an alternate design using assessed tax value as the data set, and how that maps out land value differently.  

Found on http://visual.ly

 

Wednesday
Feb202013

NPR Chart Check from the Enhanced State of the Union (SOTU)

On February 12, 2013, President Obama gave his annual State of the Union speech, but this year it was “enhanced” with charts, data visualizations and additional information in a sidebar of the display (full video above).  The team at NPR (@nprapps) published a great review a few days later called Chart Check: Did Obama’s Graphics ‘Enhance’ His Big Speech?  They also included opinions from a couple of the best data visualization experts Stephen Few (PerceptualEdge.com) and Nathan Yau (FlowingData.com)

Chart Check from the Enhanced State of the Union (SOTU)

I will say that I think the use of the charts was very successful and does make the President’s speech more effective.  By their very nature, the charts imply that the President has data behind his message, and that can be a very persuasive, compelling tactic.  You’ll also notice the wide array of chart styles so they are each memorable for different topics in the speech.  We didn’t get 27 bar charts, because the audience wouldn’t have been able to tell them apart after the speech.  We got different data visualizations for different types of data.  Stacked bars, line charts, area charts and grids colored icons.

The key frame from the video (above) is what first caught my eye.  This is the still image shown before you start playing the video.   I was instantly concerned about all of the charts after seeing this one about Deficit Reduction.  It may be because I work with data visualizations every day, but I could see instantly that the chart was wrong.  How can the $500 Billion part of the stacked bar be larger than the $600 Billion part?  That can’t be right!  Seriously, I look at this stuff all the time, and this jumps out at me in a big way.  Welcome to my life.

Here’s the full chart:

One of the biggest risks with data visualizations and infographics is what I call the Risk of Negative Impression.  The idea is that while good visuals can quickly leave a good impression with your audience, if your visualizations are incorrect or flawed, you can leave a bad impression just as quickly and effectively.  The audience thinks, “if they messed up this chart, why should I trust anything else they have to say?”  Then they feel like they have to carefully scrutinize every chart, and you have lost all credibility with your audience.

The NPR piece does a great job of breaking down 14 of the 27 charts from the speech, and even created some corrected charts to show a more realistic real visualization of the data.  I highly recommend you read the whole article on the NPR site.

I’ll mention one more example.  By visualizing data, the designer adds context and bias to the information.  The best designers try to minimize the bias, but even the choices about what data to include in the visualization help frame the audience’s understanding.  One common way to skew perception of the data is to change the scale of one or both of the axes.  A number of slides from the speech don’t start at zero, so the chart exaggerates the changes.  This is a common practice when charting stock values so the audience can see the small changes, but they often make the changes feel much bigger than they actually are.  That was the intent with this chart that only shows the range of values from 400,000 to 550,000.

Stephen Few redesigned this corrected chart for the NPR piece, and I think he nailed it.  By expanding the y-axis to start at 0, he puts the changes over time into a different perspective for the audience.

The White House has published all of the 107 slides as a scribd.com presentation:

 

White House State of the Union 2013 Enhanced Graphics by The White House

Found on the White House blog

Friday
Feb152013

2013 NBA All-Stars Player Stats

2013 NBA All-Stars Player Stats infographic

Rami Moghadam has just published two infographic posters detailing the stats for each of the players on the NBA All-Star teams.  2013 NBA All-Stars East and 2013 NBA All-Stars West both use radar charts to highlight each player’s strongest areas.

2013 NBA All-Stars Player Stats infographic

The individual radar charts are color-coded for each player’s regular team.  In the radar charts, you have to look at each stat to determine which direction is a favorable number.  A high number of turnovers isn’t a good thing, so I might suggest reversing the direction of some of the negative stats like fouls and turnovers.

2013 NBA All-Stars Player Stats closeup infographic

Good job Rami, and thanks for sending in the link!

Wednesday
Feb132013

The Geosocial Universe 3.0

The Geosocial Universe 3.0 infographic

Last week design firm JESS3 released The Geosocial Universe 3.0, an update to their prior infographics about the size of the major social media networks.

In a time not so long ago, in a galaxy not so far away, a little phenomenon was born that united the people of cyberspace through geographic services and social networking.

With changes to the social landscape occurring at lightspeed, JESS3 presents its third iteration of The Geosocial Universe, charting the latest monthly active user data for various social networks, along with the percentage of users who access each network via mobile devices.

Take a look below to discover more about the ever-expanding geosocial universe and the course of its objects.

I really like the changes to this version of the design.  They kept the same philosophy of relatively sized circles to represent each of the main social networks.  However, I’m confused by the placement of the Black Hole on the vertical scale meant to represent the percentage of mobile users.  Why does more mobile users place a network closer to the Black Hole of Obscurity?  It’s placement around the 80% mark visually implies that has meaning, but I don’t think that was the intention of the design.  Is Facebook close to obscurity?

Both a copyright (or Creative Commons) license and the URL to the infographic landing page are missing from the design.  You want readers to be able to find their way back to the original when they find the infographic posted on other sites.

This is an update to the original design from 2010:

And version 2.0 in 2012:

Friday
Jan252013

Philippe Dubost's Amaz'ing Resume

Philippe Dubost's Amaz'ing Resume

Very cool!  You have to check out Philippe Dubost’s (phildub) resume site.  Completely designed to emulate an Amazon product page, down to the smallest details.  Many of the links work nicely, taking you to a contact form or details on his LinkedIN profile page.  Things like his Product Dimensions, Only 1 Available, Star ratings and frustration-free packaging from France.  Even a Google Ad, similar to the ads on actual Amazon pages.

Certainly creative, I wondered if this should be considered an infographic resume.  I ended up convincing myself that “Yes” I do consider it to be infographic because it visualizes Philippe’s information in a way that is recognizable and easier to read and understand to the audience.  Star Ratings, key features, product photos and recommendations.  The visuals do bring meaning to the information, even though it’s done in a fun and amusing way.  It doesn’t have to be a chart of numerical data to be infographic.

What do you think?

Friday
Jan182013

Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics

Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics

Check out the Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics, infographics and data visualizations in the new German Brockhaus Encyclopedia!  Designed by oberhaeuser.info, the design studio of Martin Oberhäuser.

Series of info graphics for brockhaus, a large encyclopedia publisher from germany. The info graphics visualize several statistics and informations of topics like: the worlds highest mountains and their first ascent, the languages of the world, comets close to the earth, world oceans, ecology, media evolution and so on. One graphic shows the evolution of the world population from 1950 to 2050. Six transparent pages (one for each 20-year period) overlap each other.

These are some beautiful designs.  I’m sorry an English version isn’t available.

Found in the Behance 100 Most Appreciated Projects of 2012

Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics

Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics

Brockhaus Encyclopedia Infographics

 

 

Monday
Jan142013

SEO & Infographics - an Interview with Eric Enge

Eric Enge, Author and SEO GuruRecently, I had an amazing opportunity to interview Eric Enge about SEO & Infographics.  Eric has incredible insight in the world of SEO as a consultant, author, speaker and entrepreneur.

Eric Enge is the CEO of Stone Temple Consulting, a consulting company that provides a full range of Internet marketing optimization services including: strategic business planning, on page search engine optimization, link building, content optimization, conversion optimization, social media optimization, user engagement, and pay-per-click campaign development and optimization. Eric is co-author of the book The Art of SEO, a speaker at numerous search marketing events, and a contributing author to Search Engine LandSearch Engine Watch, and SEOmoz

 The interview covers some of the hottest topics that impact the infographics design industry today:

  • Infographics as part of a content marketing strategy
  • How Google’s changes to their algorithm impacts infographics
  • Infographics relevance and accuracy
  • Using attribution links, anchor text and embed code for infographics
  • Infographics on Pinterest 

You can read the complete interview on the InfoNewt blog

Wednesday
Jan022013

Comparing NFL Stadium Screens

Comparing NFL Stadium Screens infographic

This visual comparison of NFL Video Screens was uploaded by reddit user dbeat after the announcement of the new video display being built for the Houston Texans’ Reliant Stadium.

I would have liked to see a link to the data behind all of the screen sizes, but this visual representation does a great job of telling one story really well.  The readers can easily find their favorite team, and understand how they stack up.

Found on FlowingData and Deadspin

Friday
Dec212012

Infographic Holiday Cards 2012

Infographic Holiday Cards 2012

 

This is a limited time offer!  

Funnel Incorporated is offering a FREE 4-pack of infographic holiday cards to everyone that submits a request (while supplies last) through a giveaway on Facebook.  You must request your free pack of cards through the Facebook page by Noon CT on Saturday December 22 (Tomorrow!).

U.S. and Canada only, but anyone can download the infographic holiday themed wallpaper designs from the Funnel website at http://www.funnelinc.com/holiday

Thursday
Dec132012

The New Christmas Tradition...Artificial Christmas Trees!

The New Christmas Tradition...Artificial Christmas Trees! infographic

Wow!  Apparently the U.S. has completely converted over to artificial Christmas trees while no one was looking!  The Redefining Christmas Traditions infographic from Tree Classics is a summary of findings from two Nielsen studies in both 2011 and 2012 and information from the American Christmas Tree Association.

Every Christmas tradition begins somewhere, and those of us who follow Christmas tree trends know that more and more families are building their holiday traditions around artificial Christmas trees. Find out who’s buying artificial, where they live, and why more and more people are choosing artificial in our infographic of real vs fake artificial Christmas tree facts. If you’re thinking of starting a family tradition of your own, consider buying a Pre Lit Christmas Tree from Tree Classics and start making holiday memories that will last year after year!

The design does a great job of jumping to the main point right away.  A huge majority of homes in the U.S. use artificial Christmas trees for the holidays.  This is the Key Message of the design, and it communicates that fact in less than 5 seconds to the readers.  So even if they don’t read the rest of the design, they still understand the main point.  Also, what makes a popular infographic is bringing to light some surprising, unexpected information to the readers.

The shear magnitude of the number was surprising to me, and I think it will be to a lot of readers.  We see real live Christmas trees being the symbol of home and family traditions in the media, but the reality is that 3.5x more homes display artificial trees than live ones.

All of the important design elements are there.  Focused topic, clear data visualizations to support the Key Message, respectable sources cited, copyright statement and the URL to the original infographic so readers can find the full-size version.

Designed by InfoNewt with designer Jeremy Yingling