We realized early on that we wanted to create an infographic to inform our audience in a way that would help them accomplish tasks the average person is not capable of. For example, an infographic on how to build a computer would present a watered down guide that could point people in general directions, such as what type of processor to buy, or how much RAM is needed for specific functions.
After some browsing we landed on the idea of creating an interactive infographic to help those with little technical background make a decision about what type of device would best suit their needs. To address this type of audience, however, we had to assume that they knew nothing aside from what they desired their device for.
Our graphic is neatly broken into three parts, the eye-grabbing title, the flowchart that narrows down what the reader is looking for, and the table of information. As expected, the first item that the viewer should see is the title. We decided to use a solid oval instead of a hollow one to designate its purpose as a more important bubble. The flip-flop of the bubble/text color scheme that becomes standard throughout the rest of the graphic also serves that function. The lighter background pops out at the reader more, hopefully intriguing them enough to want to read on. The convenient aspect to the title, however, is that it directly feeds the reader into the middle part, our flowchart. The flowchart is intended as a robust ‘weed-out’ mechanism that isolates their preferences and expectations for a device and uses that information to guide them to a specific selection within the third block of the infographic. By bridging the gap between the title and the data, a task that we struggled with, the flowchart smoothly brings the reader to the final, and most complex portion of the infographic. This data-intensive table serves to give the reader a much more detailed description of each device. We designed this section to have one purpose: provide a visual representation of each category so that the reader can make trivial comparisons across columns at a glance, but also have the ability to read the text in each cell for more detailed information.
Originally, we had conflicting views about how much text we desired to see in the infographic. When one of us wanted images to convey generic ideas to the reader, the other wanted a more text-based and statistic-heavy section to show every detail about the devices. Our great compromise can be seen in the third block of the infographic, where a combination of icons and short texts are used to present the information. In doing this, the two styles can support each other by offering general concepts through images, and more specific details through short phrases. This, overall, balanced out the infographic and allowed it to present information in an engaging and informative way simultaneously.