COVID Data Viz

Star Wars or Star Trek? I totally wasn’t expecting this MD to pitch me that question on live TV. Good thing I have a teenage son who has spent years preparing me for the right answer. The docs on the Medical News Network brought me on to talk…

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Will Amazon Lift Their Ban on PowerPoint?

When Jeff Bezos said in his 2018 annual letter to stakeholders, “We don’t do PowerPoint,” you could almost hear the stock price of Microsoft sliding downward. Presentation designers around the world started looking for second jobs. CEOs in other organizations started to follow suit, because whatever Bezos does is…

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The Missing Part of Style Guides

Half of the people in my data visualization workshops don’t even realize there’s a style guide lurking around somewhere in their organization, but chances are the Communications department has been begging people to use the style guide all this time. One big reason more folks don’t adhere to the…

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A Masterclass in Data Storytelling

Everyone knows that when Katie Porter pulls out the whiteboard, someone is about to get schooled. This time, let us be the students. This video is a masterclass in data storytelling. And not just because she uses a chart. Let’s breakdown what you can learn from watching an expert make…

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Marry Your Graph

Here’s the thing: Your graph isn’t ever just going to chill out in your Excel file or Tableau worksheet. It’s going to live a life elsewhere, like in a dashboard, a slide, or a webpage. So when we make our graphs, we have to think about their future home environment.

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Visualizing Small Datasets

The morning that I’m writing this blog post, the US has just asked for a pause on the use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine because 6 women have experienced blood clots. That’s 6 cases out of the 6.8 million J & J vaccines administered, or 0.0000882%. This is…

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4 Chart Types that Fight for Equality

Data can be a pillar of peace. It can support the stories people have been writing, blogging, and screaming into megaphones. Particularly when the stories haven’t been sufficient to make certain audiences finally listen. Data and stories can team up to create a solid wall of evidence that can’t be…

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Alternatives to a Log Scale

Over in our private Academy Slack group, one of our members asked a solid, totally not snarky question about log scales. They’ve been common in visuals about COVID and there’s a fair question out there about how appropriate those are in graphs aimed at public consumption.

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Title Charts Like A Journalist

When you spend the bulk of young adulthood in research-focused academic institutions, like I did, you are steeped in a culture that tells you, explicitly or implicitly, that you can’t ever really make a claim. Taking a position on something can be seen as biased. Claiming an insight can be…

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