Delightful, strategy-shifting, and totally free ideas for your next data viz

Declutter Dataviz with Small Multiples

Are you making graphs that look like this crap? I won’t make you raise your hand. But let’s just agree not to do this, yeah? It’s SUPER hard to compare the tops of a bunch of bars. Two side by side bars per region ain’t so bad but beyond…

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The Easiest Way to Make Bullet Charts in Excel

There are lots of ways to make bullet charts, some easier than others, some better suited for specific visualization contexts. Hell, there are plug-ins you can purchase that make it a snap. Except when my plug-in broke and I had to remake about a…

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Guest Post – Charting Confidence Intervals

Hi there! I’m Angie Ficek and I’m a program evaluator at a small evaluation consulting firm called Professional Data Analysts, Inc. (PDA) in Minneapolis, MN. In a previous post, Stephanie wrote about adding standard deviations to a dataviz. I responded to her post with an example of…

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What the Hell is Wrong with the Projector & How to Fix It

Meet a hero. This is Kailen Brooks. A few months ago, I was giving a workshop on data visualization to about 40 people at the AEA Summer Institute when pretty much everything that could have gone wrong almost did. Someone’s spilled drink ran dangerously close to my computer.

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Adding a Benchmark Line to a Graph

This simple line packs so much power. Adding a benchmark line to a graph gives loads of context for the viewer. Here’s how to make one right inside Excel. It’s so easy you might pass out. My data table looks like this: I have my data and I have the benchmark…

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An Incomplete List of Females in Data Visualization

I rewrote this post 4 times, in an effort to give it a calm and professional tone. And then I thought “Ah fuck it, this is my blog and I can say whatever I want.” I’m writing this post because I just listened to an interview about data visualization. It…

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Labels are Used Sparingly

This post is about how to avoid inducing claustrophobia in your data visualizations. Too much text on a graph clutters it up, making readers feel suffocated. So let’s address the checklist item Labels are used sparingly. Sometimes, too much text isn’t the issue. Take…

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Choosing a Color Picking Tool

Giant Wes Anderson fan writing you here. So I loved loved loved it when I saw this Wes Anderson Color Palette blog. It’s like several of my happy worlds colliding into rainbows and unicorns. The blogger pulls color palettes from scenes in various Wes Anderson movies. This screenshot is…

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