Tag Archives: Infographic

Keeping your New Year’s Resolutions

 

Finished Infographic (2)

Reflection:

At first, our group had a difficult time coming up with a topic we all liked to base our infographic off of. We wanted our purpose to be both informational and helpful to the people who were referencing it. But the same time, we had a feeling most of the other groups were going to create more serious infographics so our plan was to create one that dealt with a more appealing and enthusiastic feel to it. It took us several days to come up with our final theme, having ideas that ranged from “The Art of Procrastinating” and “Burger Eating.” Since the holidays are coming up, it only seemed logical to create an infographic that could relate to the most celebrated time of the year. A struggle that many, if not all of us, go through is creating and keeping a legitimate New Year’s Resolution.

After deciding on a general topic, we spent some time thinking about what the main focus of our infographic would be. Upon realizing that the most common problem that people have pertaining to new year’s resolutions is that they have a hard time keeping them, we came to the conclusion that focusing on how to keep a new year’s resolution would make the most impact as well as cater to a broader audience. New Year’s resolutions are everybody’s way of saying that they are trying to make a new start, turn a new leaf, or do something with their lives. Our infographic is useful to anyone who is currently trying to stay committed to a resolution because our infographic has advice that can help them reach their goal. Our audience includes all people who make a new year’s resolution because it pertains to them and has all the information they need on how to be successful in completing it.

The design of this infographic is supposed to give a positive vibe and encourage a sense of victory or celebration. The way that the colors are boldest at the top draw the viewer’s eyes to the title, or topic, grabbing their interest. From there, the colors and shapes fade off as the infographic starts to focus more heavily on statistics and information. Towards the end, however, the celebratory theme picks up again with the reappearance of the stars. The charts and visuals were also added to aid the viewer in understanding our infographic. Each visual references to some fact, statistic, or piece of advice that is mentioned in its same general area, and as a whole, they make our infographic seem more visually appealing and colorful.

 

What Device Best Suits Me

Devices(LucasEdit)Lucas Müller & Joshua Kassab

Infographic Assessment

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.

 

 

 

Infographic and Reflection

CafInfographic-page-001

We decided to to make our infographic about the effects of caffeine. We wanted to do something about coffee, we decided to focus our infographic around the effects of caffeine itself, as neither of us really knew what it did aside from keeping people awake. We decided to split our infographic down the middle, with positive effects on one side of a human body and all of the negative effects on the other side. This helped make it  more organized.  We tried to arrange the information around the human body to provide a balance, so there wasn’t too much clutter in anyone one area.

inforeflec2

This worked out fairly well; since caffeine is a stimulant, most of it’s effects are in the central nervous system. So, we were able to put two large bubbles with general effects caffeine has on the central nervous system on either side , this further helps to divide the inforgraphic. Then we added in other information around the human’s torso. However since caffeine primarily acts on the nervous system, it has very few effects that act on other area’s of the body. This left us with some empty space. To solve this, we placed additional facts in the blank space inside of the circular coffee stains.

inforeflec1

 

We put one additional fact on each side of the infographic to maintain balance. These facts also align with the positive versus negative divide that we established. Conveniently, these extra effects can’t rally be targeted to a specific body area, so this way we could still include them. On the positive side, we noted caffeine’s link to lower suicide rates, and on the negative side we noted that a lethal dose of caffeine would take approximately 100 cups of coffee. The fact that it would take so much coffee to die of a caffeine overdose also helps to reinforce our argument since it shows how safe caffeine is.

 

inforeflec3

 

We put a happy guy on the positive side, and a crazy lady on the negative side. We used different colors to display the information on the different sides. On the positive side we primarily used blue since it’s associated with being calm, and on the negative side we used red since it’s much more aggressive. We also used neutral colors, and put text in contrasting colors so it was easy to read.

Does Design Really Matter?

Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 4.23.21 PM 

Because most of the text is too small to read, here is a link to the infographic online.

This specific infographic jumped out at me as I was scrolling through Google because of its visual appeal. After visiting the website that posted it, I discovered that it was merely used as an example of how an infographic can present survey data. The infographic says at the top that a company called 99designs had conducted the study and created this graphic. In search of further information, I googled “99designs does design matter study” and then found the original source of data.

The link that I initially came across presented the infographic as just an example of a certain type of infographic. Therefore, the actual data was used in a more shallow manner, just to show that it can make survey data easy to interpret. To provide insight on how insignificant the actual data was, only a portion of the actual infographic was posted on the website. On the original source of data, however, the substance of the data is much more significant. I did some research by visiting the 99designs company website and learned that they specialize in providing graphic designs to small businesses. This infographic was perhaps published to make their product seem more important and essential to other small businesses. It also shows that small businesses are willing to spend more money on this, perhaps to show that “other people are doing it”. Each of the two uses of this infographic serve their purposes, and the infographic is reliable. The survey information displayed comes directly from the 99designs study and is posted on the official 99designs blog. This company is also well-established globally and provides all contact information. In general, one should attempt to trace an infographic back to its original source because context can change meaning. One should also research the affiliated company or organization to see if it is credible. After doing so, a decision can be made.

 

Are Infographics as Trustworthy as They Seem?

http://www.vijayforvictory.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/The-Facts-about-Bottled-Water.jpg

Infographics are unique in that they convey information effectively and creatively with an emphasis on visual elements. A side effect of this method is that people tend to believe it unconditionally. Images give viewers a false sense of authority from the author that is not always justified.

As with many infographics, the sources in the above graphic are small and to the side. One of the sources listed at the bottom (here is the link) concerns the price of bottled water and offers the information surrounding the cost of tap water versus that of bottled water. Several of the sources are broken links; the one I picked was one of the few that was still intact. The source, which, for the sake of clarity, will be referred to as the article, happens to be published by the same group as this infographic (Environmental Working Group or EWG) but is not completely consistent with the data that is shown in the image. While the infographic states “the price of bottled water is up to 10,000 times the cost of tap water”, the article states that this number is closer to 1,900.

Some brief digging shows that EWG is a credible source that researches and reports much of its data. Because of this fact, it is relatively safe to assume that the article is the primary document. The troubling aspect of this finding is that the infographic above is also a product of EWG which affects the credibility of both sources. One possible reason for this discrepancy is exaggeration, as it is clear that the intent of the above infographic is to discourage the use of bottled water. Exaggerating the price of bottled water is an effective and eye catching way to reduce its  consumption. In light of this finding, the validity of both the infographic and the reports at EWG may be placed into question, despite the viewers initial impressions of the infographic. While some of the information that is presented in this image may very well be true and supported, the overall perceived credibility of the infographic may be augmented by its visual appeal. It is a distinct possibility that the infographic is incorrectly communicating data and its validity should be put into question.

Facebook’s Critical Number: 140.3 Billion

Facebook-infographic-1-billion

Link: http://mashable.com/2012/10/05/the-most-important-facebook-number-140-billion/

Note: I was encountering problems scaling the picture to the screen, so you’ll probably have to go to the link to see the infographic in full size. In addition, this blog post tackles infographics in general.

I’ve found this infographic in several Internet blogs, and in several entries on Imgur and Pinterest, but I dug deep as possible to find the closest to original source from which this image comes. Seeing as how it is a Facebook infographic, and its source (Facebook Newsroom) is pointed out in the bottom left, as the reader I safely assume that these statistics were acquired from Facebook itself, and not just made up; I trust Facebook as being the credited source of the data. However, despite the credit I give to this infographic, it took over an hour of digging through the Web to find a source I felt was authentic, or the most trustworthy. Considering the length of time I spent searching, and the dozens of sources I checked for authenticity, I hold the conviction that infographics are unreliable display cases of information until an original source can be found.

For infographics in general, not just the aforementioned Facebook statistics, I feel they are an effective means of organizing and displaying data, but they themselves cannot quantify an argument; they require a blog poster, a web editor, or some other outside entity to bend the information held within towards a specific argument, goal, objective, or what have you. Furthermore, I lose trust in a website or blog that sporadically uses infographics without citing their source, as the creator/editor of the post may have just carelessly slapped the image into the text to make it more visually appealing, doing little to nothing good for the structure of the post or its argument.

To be blunt, infographics should not be trusted UNTIL a primary source can be identified and drawn upon. Simply finding one on the web and thinking to oneself “Hmm, this looks trustworthy” without bothering to look into the source(s) may prove to majorly mislead the reader.

National Octopus Day!

octopus_infographic1

In honor of National Octopus Day on October 10th, this infographic on octopuses was created to give viewers some general information about octopuses. Though I found this infographic on google images, the source of the infographic was not too difficult to track. I began by following the image to the website it was taken from. This led me to a daily infographic website. Their article accompanying the infographic was the information on the infographic written in paragraph form. They gave no sources in the article, but there was a source on the infographic. The creator of the infographic included their source of the National Aquarium and a website. On their homepage, I searched for octopuses on their database of animals within the aquarium and found only one variety of octopus: the Giant Pacific Octopus. This link led to an abundance of information about the Giant Pacific Octopus and octopuses in general. It even included the original infographic that I had found on Google images confirming my belief that the National Aquarium had made the infographic.

I also came to the conclusion that the information provided on the website was not taken from alternate sources for two reasons. First, there were no sources listed on the website, and scientific articles and websites usually post their sources to confirm their claims. Secondly, I was exploring their website and found a page of their “experts”. They have experts in multiple fields that would suggest the knowledge was either learned in their studies, or they conducted their own research and were using their own results and observations on the website. My assumptions of scientific protocol for citing sources, and the National Aquarium’s group of experts leads me to believe that this is the original source of the information.

America runs on coffee?

Infographics by Stephen Catapano, via Behancehttp://www.pinterest.com/infographicmad/beverages-infographics/

I found this infographic on Pinterest, however when I researched where the data came from I found multiple branches of sources. The first “fact” I was concerned with in this image was the 48 million styrofoam cups used daily. I grew up in New York City where there is a coffee cart every half a block. I bought coffee every day at many various locations and I was only ever handed paper cups. Even when buying drinks from a deli or Dunkin Donuts I usually am given plastic, not styrofoam. After researching the amount of styrofoam cups used by Americans, the average was about 1 billion per year. When you use this number to find cups per day it comes out to approximately 3 million per day. 3 million per day is significantly less than the 48 million daily number on the infographic. Next, I found a website that specifically looks at coffee statistics. This website states that the average price of a cup of coffee is actually $1.38. Surprisingly, on the website Statistic Brain I found almost all of the data exactly the same as on the infographic. Noticeably, the data was sometimes reversed to show larger percentages on the graphic. For example, on Statistic Brain it states that 35% drink their coffee black. The opposite of this would be those who add cream or sugar (the 65% on the infographic). Larger percentages and  statistics makes the infographic seem more interesting to read and seems to stand out more when it comes to the facts and figures of coffee drinking.  Almost all of their remaining data points match precisely with what was posted on Statistic Brain.

After following through 4 other sources from Statistic Brain to Live Science Magazine eventually to a study published in  the Archives of Internal Medicine, did I find the original source of the data. the study was actually performed in 2011. I think that the data found in the infographic posted, while interesting, is misleading because of its outmoded facts. This really emphasizes how we should always question the information that we are given and check the relevance of the data.

“Andre The Great”

Andre the Great infographic Infographic

http://visual.ly/andre-great-infographic (Infographic)

http://www.nba.com/playerfile/andre_miller/bio/ (source)

Infographic is not an unique feature in sports. In fact, sports may be the field that uses infographic most efficiently. Among sports, basketball and baseball are the ones that use infographic most often. Infographic in sports is used widely in showing various records and statistics. Infographic, having the advantage of visualizing statistics in neat and organized way,  helps readers to view substantial amount of records easily by putting them in visualization rather than mere words and numbers.

Picture above is appropriate example to show advantages of using infography.  You can see how the information in the source seems so boring, and infography, in contrast, is certainly much more attractive.  The infography above emphasizes its main theme in a way that everybody can recognize as soon as he/she sees it. “Andre the Great.” This infography is obviously praising numerous records established by Andre Miller, the basketball player. Just below the title, there are several lines you can see, explaining the statistics below. Those lines are the ones that i referred to, as “mere words”, just as words shown in the source page. Those letters with relatively small sizes are marking that they are not that important, since all the information is shown below in clearer and more distinctive way. The orders of records from 1st to Andre Miller and the number of those records make viewers easier to understand what kind of records did he achieve, and about where his records is positioning at.  For  last two records, bar graphs are making the point more clearly. Such infographic gives clear idea of what kind of information it wants to convey to its readers. Also, picture of Andre Miller on the right side cannot be neglected. Such visual aids cannot be provided in writing. The picture not only shows the appearance of the player, but also tells his back number and the emblem of his team, which is, by the way, Denver Nuggets.

Why We Shouldn’t Throw Babies

playing with baby

http://resourceful-parenting.blogspot.com/2012/06/bayi-anda-bukan-bola.html

In this article, the infographic and the visualization both play a very important part in conveying a very important idea to the general public.

Let’s start with the visualization. At first glance, we quickly notice that the visualization is a man playing with a baby. More importantly, it would appear to be a general guide on how to play with a baby. We see on the left that simply holding the baby is a gernally accepted action through the relatively “calm” color scheme in the drawing and a big “yes” underlined near the picture. On the right side, however, we see the same man throwing his baby up into the air, with a big, slanted “no” in all caps and all red lettering along with a warning sign. This visual communicates to us that it is ok to hold a baby up in the air but actually throwing it into the air comes with some kind of warning or wrong doing.

Moving on to the actual information, the article states that throwing babies is a very dangerous activity. The baby may be enjoying it, but at such a young age even if you do catch it every time you can still cause the baby some serious health problems attributed to the increased heart rate the baby gets when it is in freefall. The information listed in the article helps explain the reasons behind the visualization. Without the information, we would be left to assume that throwing babies is wrong and we would have absolutely no idea why this is. The picture states an idea, and the information sheds light on the idea introduced in the picture. Without the picture there would be nothing for the information to talk about. Without the information, we’d just have a picture with a vague purpose that we probably wouldn’t be able to pin down for a discussion of any kind.

Infographic: the electric car initiative

http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1087971_where-are-electric-car-charging-stations-infographic-shows-it-all

This infographic gives us lots of information regarding electric cars. The map clearly shows the growth over the years in a very clear and concise way that is easy to visualize and understand. When it comes to data that tries to describe the location of things on a map, it’s very hard to find alternatives to present that information other than using an actual map; however, what makes this inforgraphic stand out is the use of colors to distinguish and organize information. The colors used are visually appealing and provide very useful visual cues for when reading or just skimming through the infographic. This infographic uses flat styling to help make it as visually appealing as possible as well as to give it a modernistic touch. This infographic adds tremendous value to the article mainly because it displays information that can only be presented visually: one such example of this are the approximate locations of the charging stations on the map. Even without looking at the numbers presented, it is clear to anybody who even takes a quick glance at this inforgraphic that the number of electric car charging stations has increased over the years. The alternative to the infographic would include stating the numbers and perhaps using a basic map to visualize the locations of the charging stations. With this infographic, a legend of 1 car = 1000 vehicles makes interpreting the numbers even easier; readers can visualize how little 326 plug in hybrids in 2010 is when compared to 38,565 plug in hybrids in 2012. Without the visualization, it’s much harder to imagine the real comparison between these two figures. The greatest advantage of having this infographic is the use of easy-to-interpret visual cues that help people understand and retain the information better. Just numbers without pictures make understanding the general concept harder and the article would not be nearly as effective at its argument.

 

It’s Not What You Know, It’s Who You Know

http://sales.linkedin.com/blog/house-of-cards-the-power-of-connections/
House-of-Cards-LinkedIn-Connections

This infographic represents the power of social connection within the fictional television show House of Cards. While I have never seen this series, I can strongly concur with the message presented in the image. As important as intelligence and skills are, a person who desires to be successful must have an outlet into the community and workplace, and the only way to connect with potential business opportunities.
The complexity of the web shows the usefulness of a broad professional and social network. Those connections are also grouped and color-coded in order to symbolize the ability of a person to branch out to different subsets of people. Also, the inclusion of faces shows the inner circle of people that have a large influence on their subordinates.
Linked-in is also an ideal medium for this infographic. This social media site is specifically designed for professionals who would benefit from this type of information and visualization.

Social Media Sites and Their Average Monthly Usage

social-engagement-infographic

http://www.askingsmarterquestions.com/infographic-google-social-engagement-falls-short/

This post does a great job showing the more important social media sites at first glance. The purpose of the infographic is to show how many minutes the average user spends on each site over a one month period. Facebook pops out the most just because of the size of its bubble and logo while others have smaller bubbles and take longer to be noticed. It took me several seconds to notice the Google+ bubble at the bottom. This picture’s authority comes from the The Wall Street Journal logo at the bottom right hand side of the frame. The Wall Street Journal is a well-known and well respected news source and adding it to the picture gives it more value. Also, the data was taken from the internet and compiled by comScore which gives the picture a little more authority.

The source of the infographic is an article about how little time Google+ users spend on the site. I actually did not expect this to be the focus of the article, but instead for it to be about how large the Facebook bubble is. The infographic conveys almost all of the information needed to come to the same conclusion as the author of the article. The article explains that Google released a statistic that Google+ has over 90 million users, and 60% of them are active daily. The infographic demonstrates the even if 60% of the users are active, they spend only a few seconds on the site at a time, probably coming from logging into one of Google’s many sites.

The Ease of becoming an Entrepreneur

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A visual aid from the magazine Entrepreneur.

Included after an introduction about ways to succeed at being an entrepreneur, the above infographic along with four other infographics were used as suggestions for thriving. The graphic is a lot friendlier to viewers than an article and is more enticing to people who only want to look for a moment. They can choose the pieces of the graphic that would be most useful to them without needing to skim an entire article. Large blocks of text can be extremely off-putting to people in a rush, which most people interested in succeeding in entrepreneurship usually are. The use of minimal words allows for quick skimming which is also aided by having different sizes of text to indicate which phrases contain the most important ideas. This method of conveying ideas using the minimal text also makes the “tips” seem easier to do. It is almost as if it is a checklist, rather than a project or life change needing to be done. The tips are also extremely easy and do not ask much of the reader which also aids in making the changes more manageable.

By having the cartoon of the bedroom, it allows for easier comprehension and remembrance of the information. When given the scenario “getting up early” and a visual of pancakes, it is fairly easy to assume they are suggesting eating a good breakfast without needing to read the caption. Also, when recalling the tips, it is sometimes easier to recall pictures, rather than the important words that were among a sea of other words. The fusion of pictures and minimal words, allows the suggestions to come across clearly and simply, making the tips seem more manageable to integrate into one’s daily life.

Think Twice About Plastic

OWOO_PlasticsInfographic_2012_blog

Reckas, Ted. “The Plastics Breakdown: An Infographic.” One World One Ocean Campaign.  MacGillivray Freeman Films. 13 Sept 2012. Web. 8 Sept 2014.

 

 

Infographics are created to make an argument, and this does not just include the facts and numbers included in graphic. Right away our eyes are drawn to the swordfish cutting through a chunk of text with caught in a plastic bag. This image instantly makes the viewer want to help this poor fish, accomplishing the goal of the infographic before anyone even reads the first word. When you take a closer look at all the animals on the graphic they are almost all given human emotions and expressions, there is even a couple of fish wearing glasses, which allows the viewer to instantly relate to all of the animals depicted. These emotions are brought out even more by the color scheme used, all the blues and greens and cool colors give the graphic a sad look even without any of the context. From the swordfish our eyes are drawn to the right hand panel. The viewers eyes are drawn here for several reasons, first it is distinguished by a box and a different background color, also the information inside looks very organized, and therefore a good place to start reading. All of the facts in this box are accompanied by images we relate to death, bio-hazard signs and skulls, as well as certain words, like toxic and petroleum. These words and phrases are printed much larger than the other text, and therefore have a much larger impact on us. By just looking at these two places on the graphic the average viewer has already been convinced that plastic in the ocean is something bad that we need to stop, and that mean the graphic has done its job. All of the real facts do not need to be read, and in fact nothing is really gained from reading them, all of the reactions that you will likely experience from this picture will come in the first few seconds of viewing it.