Visuals for the Methods Section

You can tell when someone is getting their data viz eye well-honed because they start asking where ELSE can I include visuals that will better explain my work? That’s Sue. She had grown comfortable with high-impact, story-telling charts in the Results section of her reporting but…

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Add Labels ON Your Bars

Meg, an Academy student, sent me a great question for our monthly Office Hours call: How do I replicate this? Pretty cool chart, right? It comes from Global Web Index, who put out tons of relevant data in interesting graphs.

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Graphic Designers Need To Learn Data Viz

I am a data nerd. I grew up, professionally speaking, designing studies, collecting data, and trying to get people to make use of the analysis and results. After I married a graphic designer, I realized that no one was going to pay attention to my amazing, glorious, wonderful data if my…

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How To Teach People Data Visualization

Have you ever accidentally taken one step too far down the internet rabbit hole? This has happened to me more than once when I’m trying to google the solution to why my chart isn’t working. I click into a Q & A forum that teases the answer – but the…

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Friends Don’t Let Friends Use Stoplight Color Schemes

A google image search of “data scorecard” turns up these results: Full, just FULL, of stoplight color schemes. Friends don’t let friends use stoplight color schemes. This is the tiny hill I am willing to die on. So Friend, let’s talk about why this has got…

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The Answer Lies Within

The most annoying Magic 8 ball answer would be “The answer lies within.” Because, it’s like, why would I even be consulting you, Magic 8 ball, if I already knew the answer? Yet in reality I can’t even believe how often this is the case. People will actually tell me…

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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 Number One Thing Holding Back Great Data Visualization

Once a season I’ll get an itch to overhaul some part of my house. It’s an old house, so it usually happens that in the process of fixing one problem, we identify another that will send me back to my local hardware store and double the length of the project.

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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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Make Great Graphs in Google Sheets

If you’ve ever been in the audience of one of my workshops, you can tell that I was once a teacher. I use the same classroom management skills when I teach 100 adults how to graph as I did when I was teaching 25 kindergartners how to read. Back…

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