Monday, 21 January 2013

Good graphic, bad graphic

Here are two topical graphics at different ends of the scale. This one, from Canada's National Post, on the number of gun deaths in the US in the month following Sandy Hook, is excellent. The first rule of graphics is to make the information easy to understand. Even without studying the detail you get an immediate understanding of the scale of the very scary problem.
On the other hand, this one on the USA cycling scandal can only be described as infographic hell. Please only take a look if you have headache tablets to hand. As designer David Bailey  said on my Twitter account it looks like someone stuck their Panini Sticker collection on the London Underground map. He has a point, except that the underground map is easy to follow. This one is just impossible.


  1. Thanks for the mention Peter.
    It gives me the opportunity to say that due to the economic down turn in Ireland I'm available for any page design/sub editing or DTP training duties any of your subscribers might need!

  2. I totally agree with your assessment of the migraine-inducing graphic on the cycling scandal. However, I can't quite concur with your view of the gun deaths graphic. I'm not convinced it does convey the true scale of the problem, and I doubt whether it adds a great deal to the sum of human understanding. In this case, maybe a thousand words would tell the story a little better.