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SWD week 04: annotated lines

[Placeholder outline: visuals + additional selections forthcoming (see April 20+22 email notes)]

notable strategies

  • Matching visual details to subject matter (icons/outlines, colors, brand-specific fonts, etc.)
  • Matching annotations to line, line segment, or data point via color & proximity
  • Positioning annotations to preserve clear space while occupying “empty space”
  • Aligning annotations to reinforce both x- and y-logic and -look
  • Using data labels to make axis labels optional (or vice versa)

Webinar Engagement By Lea Pica 2018-01

Theft-worthy: highlighting key story points by matching colors in takeaway title to line itself; annotating just the main turning points; keeping x-axis intervals uncluttered.

Improvable: clean up distracting similarity between attendee count (107) and % (100) — probably retain 90%, 90%, 73% and delete 95, 95, 78 (superfluous given y-axis)

TEDx Views in Millions By Faisal 2018-01

Theft-worthy: familiar branding to match topic (caught my attention); lots of white space makes sparse annotations stand out.

Improvable: identify data source (e.g. in small print at lower left or right); omit decimal points in data labels (unnecessary precision here).

The Tales of Three Dogs By Alicia F Bembenek 2018-01

Theft-worthy: collecting annotations in one area per story (from subtitle) and data shape, with colors unifying headings, key phrases, and lines.

Improvable: make it easier to match timeline to key events/periods mentioned in stories. For example, add light blue bar for 1960-1970 (or 1982?), dark brown dots for 1963, 1982, 1994, and orange dot(s) for 1985 (and maybe 1961?, 1979?).

Rise and Fall of the Name Neil in the USA By Neil Richards 2018-01-06

Delightful process notes & reflections re: clear space

Theft-worthy: judiciously illuminating “empty space” with right- or left-aligned highlights (vertical markers cf. horizontal depends on chart/space shape).

Improvable: include comma in 4-digit counts to distinguish visually from 4-digit years.

Sapiens: Population Growth By Kat Greenbrook 2018-01-08

Theft-worthy: charting time elsewhere than x-axis to fit story (very tall y-axis for Sapiens; line itself for War on SIDS).

How has the world’s population changed over the last 1000 years? | By Hayley | 2018-01

Improvable: Remove year from data labels (x-axis enough)

Back To Sleep and the War on SIDS By Bill Rapp 2018-01-09 (connected scatterplot)

Improvable: for War on SIDS, redo subtitle to presage story (improvement then stagnation)