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  • feedwordpress 09:01:59 on 2018/01/07 Permalink
    Tags: 2018, American Party, Compromise of 1850, Fugitive Slave Act, , , infographics, Know-Nothing Party, Millard Fillmore, nativist,   

    “Yet in opinions look not always back, / Your wake is nothing, mind the coming track”*… 

     

    One of ten trends to watch in 2018

    From North Korea’s nuclear tests to global refugee flows, the rise or fall in numbers signals where the world may be headed in 2018. To help visualize what’s on the horizon, CFR [Council on Foreign Relations] editors asked ten of our experts to highlight the charts and graphs to keep an eye on in the coming year…

    Ten charts and the short essays that explain their importance to our future:  “Visualizing 2018: The Essential Graphics.”

    * Yet in opinions look not always back,
    Your wake is nothing, mind the coming track;
    Leave what you’ve done for what you have to do;
    Don’t be “consistent,” but be simply true.
    ― Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

    ###

    As we monitor the gauges, we might send underwhelming birthday greetings to Millard Fillmore; he was born on this date in 1800.  The last member of the Whig Party to serve as President, he was a Congressional Representative from New York who was elected to the Vice Presidency in 1848 on Zachary Taylor’s ticket.  When Taylor died in 1850, Fillmore became the second V.P. to assume the presidency between elections.

    Fillmore’s signature accomplishment was the passage of the Compromise of 1850 passed, a bargain that led to a brief truce in the battle over slavery– a package of legislation so ill-conceived (it contained the Fugitive Slave Act) and unpopular that Fillmore failed to get his own party’s nomination for President in the election of 1852, which he sat out.  Unwilling to follow Lincoln into the new Republican Party, he got the endorsement of the nativist Know Nothing Party (dba, the American Party) four years later, and finished third in the 1856 election.

    Matthew Brady’s photo of Fillmore

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  • feedwordpress 09:01:54 on 2017/12/20 Permalink
    Tags: , , dimensionality, Edwin Abbott, Flatland, infographics, , ,   

    “Above all else show the data”*… 

     

    With the hope that your celebrations will be warm and peaceful, and with thanks for your kind attention over the last twelve months, (Roughly) Daily is going on it’s annual Holiday hiatus…  So here, to tide us over, The Economist Graphics Unit’s wonderful “2017 Daily chart advent calendar” (the first installment of which, above)– a collection of 25 of the years best infographics, each with a short accompanying essay.

    See you in the New Year!

    * Edward Tufte

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    As we revel in new ways of seeing, we might send terrifyingly (and at the same time, amusingly) insightful birthday greetings to Edwin Abbott; he was born on this date in 1838.  A schoolmaster and theologian, Abbott is best remembered as the author of the remarkable novella Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions (1884). Writing pseudonymously as “A Square,” Abbott used the fictional two-dimensional world of Flatland to offer pointedly-satirical observations on the social hierarchy of Victorian culture. But the work has survived– and inspired legions of mathematicians and science fiction writers– by virtue of its fresh and accessible examination of dimensionality.  Indeed, Flatland was largely ignored on its original publication; but it was re-discovered after Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity– which posits a fourth dimension– was introduced; in a 1920 letter to Nature, Abbott is called a prophet for his intuition of the importance of time to explain certain phenomena.

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:54 on 2017/10/30 Permalink
    Tags: , infographics, , , , Symbolist, , ,   

    “Science is what you know, philosophy is what you don’t know”*… 

     

    A small section of the interactive Philosopher’s Web

    When data scientist Grant Louis Oliveira decided he wanted to undertake a self-guided course of study to “more rigorously explore my ideas,” he began with the honest admission, “I find the world of philosophy a bit impenetrable.”

    Where some of us might make an outline, a spreadsheet, or a humble reading list, Oliveira created a complex “social network visualization” of “a history of philosophy” to act as his guide.

    “What I imagined,” he writes, “is something like a tree arranged down a timeline. More influential philosophers would be bigger nodes, and the size of the lines between the nodes would perhaps be variable by strength of influence.”

    The project, called “Philosopher’s Web,” shows us an impressively dense collection of names—hundreds of names—held together by what look like the bendy filaments in a fiber-optic cable. Each blue dot represents a philosopher, the thin gray lines between the dots represent lines of influence…

    More on Oliveira’s opus at “‘The Philosopher’s Web,’ an Interactive Data Visualization Shows the Web of Influences Connecting Ancient & Modern Philosophers“; poke around in it here.

    See also:

    The Entire Discipline of Philosophy Visualized with Mapping Software: See All of the Complex Networks

    The History of Philosophy, from 600 B.C.E. to 1935, Visualized in Two Massive, 44-Foot High Diagrams

    The History of Philosophy Visualized

    * Bertrand Russell

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    As we realize that it’s all about the questions, we might send sensuously-written birthday greetings to Ambroise Paul Toussaint Jules Valéry; he was born on this date in 1871.  An educator, essayist, and philosopher, he is best remembered as a poet– the last of the great French Symbolists.  His best-known work is probably la Jeune Parque.

    A member of the Académie Française, Valéry was stripped of his academic positions and distinctions because of his quiet refusal to collaborate with Vichy and the German occupation during World War II.  He was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 12 different years.

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:50 on 2017/08/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , infographics, , ,   

    “Everything has a time of being – a birth, a life span, and a death”*… 

     

    In 2014, the United States ranked 41st in the world in life expectancy, with an average American expected to live to age 78. But, like most averages, that doesn’t paint the whole picture. Life expectancy is more like Norway’s in some parts of the country and more like Kazakhstan’s in others.

    That’s why it’s more useful to look at it county by county…

    An interactive map that allows one to do exactly that: “How life expectancy in U.S. counties compares to other countries.”

    *Dixie Lee Ray

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    As we take our vitamins, we might send carefully-conserved birthday greetings to Gifford Pinchot; he was born on this date in 1865.  An American forester, he became the first chief of the Forest Service in 1905.  By 1910, with President Theodore Roosevelt’s backing, he built 60 forest reserves covering 56 million acres into 150 national forests covering 172 million acres.  Roosevelt’s successor, President Taft– no environmentalist– fired Pinchot.  Still Pinchot’s efforts earned him the honorific, “the father of conservation.”

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:03 on 2017/06/08 Permalink
    Tags: , , , infographics, James Madison, , ,   

    “Caveat lector”*… 

     

    xkcd

    * “Let the reader beware,” Latin phrase

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    As we interrogate our sources, we might recall that it was on this date in 1789 that Representative (later, President) James Madison introduced nine amendments to the U.S. Constitution in the House of Representatives; subsequently, Madison added three more, ten of which (including 7 of his original nine) became the Bill of Rights.

    Madison, often called “the Father of the Constitution,” created the amendments to appease anti-Federalists on the heels of the oftentimes bitter 1787–88 battle over ratification of the U.S. Constitution– in the drafting of which he had also played a central role.

    Madison

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  • feedwordpress 08:01:33 on 2017/04/12 Permalink
    Tags: genetic engineering, , , infographics, , oncomouse, , ,   

    “The human body is the best picture of the human soul”*… 

     

    DID YOU KNOW:

    • Bill Gates is actually worth $1,956
    • Canadian pop star Justin Bieber has five times fewer cells in his brain than in his liver
    • Top tennis player Serena Williams has 24.5 trillion red blood cells powering her body
    • Internet and social media pioneer Mark Zuckerberg’s body contains 800MB of data
    • President Barack Obama’s head rules his heart; his brain weighs 1.4kg, his heart just 0.4kg

    Welcome to The Making of Me and You, a unique, new digital interactive from BBC Earth that details extraordinary personalised facts.

    Just input your date of birth, sex at birth, height and weight, and choose the metric or imperial units that make most sense to you.

    And instantly find out:

    • The chemical ingredients that make up you, and what your body is worth
    • How many atoms you are made of, and what can be made with them
    • How many fat, blood, skin and brain cells you have
    • How much genetic data is inside you
    • How many other microbes live on your body with you
    • The size and weight of your internal organs
    • How much wee, poo, sperm or eggs you have produced so far
    • How many times you have blinked, breathed, yawned and farted
    • And so much more

    Try it at: “The Making of You and Me.”

    * Ludwig Wittgenstein

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    As we take our measures, we might recall that it was on this date in 1988 that the United States Patent and Trademark Office granted U.S. Patent 4,736,866 to Harvard College for “a transgenic non-human mammal whose germ cells and somatic cells contain a recombinant activated oncogene sequence introduced into said mammal…”– the first U.S. patent issued on a mammalian life form.  The Oncomouse (as it was known, a mouse altered to be highly susceptible to breast cancer) was called the product of the year by a major financial magazine.

    Although the mouse was genetically modified following a process designed by Philip Leder and Timothy A Stewart of Harvard, and the patent was owned by Harvard Medical School, it was developed with funding from DuPont, which scored a commercialization arrangement that entitled DuPont to exclusive license of the patent. Until the patent was ruled expired in 2005, DuPont claimed patent protection on any anticancer product derived from the mice.

    The first patent for a life form was issued seven years earlier for a genetically engineered bacterium.

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  • feedwordpress 09:01:20 on 2017/02/15 Permalink
    Tags: 900 World’s Fair, Africa-American, , , , infographics, Jeremy Bentham, , , utilitarianism,   

    “In this country American means white. Everybody else has to hyphenate”*… 

     

    From electricity, giant telescopes, escalators, diesel turbines, and talking movies, the 1900 World’s Fair promised dazzling technology for the 50 million visitors who flocked to Paris. But among the expo’s 80,000 exhibitions, one comparatively low-tech production from the American contingent demonstrated perhaps the most consequential achievement of that time.

    The Exhibit of American Negroes” enshrined the contributions of African Americans to the US economy, just 35 years after slavery was abolished in the US. The showcase within the fair’s Palace of Social Economy featured a gallery of photographs, 350 patents awarded to black inventors, a small statue of abolitionist Frederick Douglass, 200 books and periodicals by black scholars including an illustrated study by the noted sociologist and civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois…

    The extraordinary works that Du Bois had his students (at [Clark] Atlanta University) create are riveting both for their account of Africa-American life at the turn of the last century and for their remarkable power as infographics.  See them at “Hand-drawn infographics commissioned by W.E.B. Du Bois illuminate how Black Americans lived in the 1900s.”

    * Toni Morrison

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    As we agree with Ali,** we might send utilitarian birthday greetings to Jeremy Bentham; the author, jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer was born on this date in 1748.  Bentham is considered a founder of modern Utilitarianism (via his own work, and that of students including James Mill and his son, John Stuart Mill); he actively advocated individual and economic freedom, the separation of church and state, freedom of expression, equal rights for women, the right to divorce, and the decriminalizing of homosexual acts. He argued for the abolition of slavery and the death penalty, and for the abolition of physical punishment, including that of children.

    Bentham was involved in the founding of University College (then, the University of London), the first in England to admit all, regardless of race, creed, or political belief.  On his death, he was dissected as part of a public anatomy lecture– as he specified in his will.  Afterward– again, as Bentham’s will specified– the skeleton and head were preserved and stored in a wooden cabinet called the “Auto-icon”, with the skeleton stuffed out with hay and dressed in Bentham’s clothes.  Bentham had intended the Auto-icon to incorporate his actual head, preserved to resemble its appearance in life.  But experimental efforts at mummification, though technically successful, left the head looking alarmingly macabre, with dried and darkened skin stretched tautly over the skull.  So the Auto-icon was given a wax head, fitted with some of Bentham’s own hair.

    It is normally kept on public display at the end of the South Cloisters in the main building of University College.  The real head was displayed in the same case as the Auto-icon for many years, but became the target of repeated student pranks, so is now locked away.

     see a virtual, 360-degree rotatable version here

    ** “Hating people because of their color is wrong. And it doesn’t matter which color does the hating. It’s just plain wrong.”  – Muhammad Ali

     
  • feedwordpress 09:01:42 on 2017/01/07 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Gerard Durrell, infographics, , My Family and Other Animals, , The Durrells,   

    “The picture is worth ten thousand words”*… 

     

    The first issue of National Geographic magazine, published in October 1888, was vastly different to the magazine we know today. It contained no photographs or illustrations. The cover was brown, with just the title and symbol of the National Geographic Society.

    The following year, the magazine published a four-color foldout map, the first step towards the all-color charts and diagrams that have since become synonymous with National Geographic. “We’re in the business of using art to explain,”  Kaitlin Yarnall, Deputy Creative Director, explains…

    Since then, National Geographic has become renowned for the infographics it uses to break down complex information…

    More background– and beautiful examples– at “See the Most Captivating Infographics of the Last Century.”

    * … and its variants: a supposed Chinese (or Japanese) proverb, actually coined by Frank Bernard in the early 20th century

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    As we show instead of tell, we might send adventurous birthday greetings to Gerald “Gerry” Malcolm Durrell; he was born on this date in 1925.  A British naturalist, zookeeper, conservationist, author, and television presenter, most of his work was rooted in his life as an animal collector and enthusiast… though he is probably most widely known for his autobiographical book My Family and Other Animals and its successors, Birds, Beasts, and Relatives and The Garden of the Gods... which have been made into television and radio mini-series many times, most recently as ITV’s/PBS’s The Durrells.

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  • feedwordpress 09:01:39 on 2016/11/18 Permalink
    Tags: , big band, , , infographics, , , , , ,   

    “Pop music has been exhausted”*… 

     

     

    … and so it becomes the subject of art.

    A year ago, local artist Elle Luna challenged artists from around the world with her “100-Day Project,” an idea with a simple premise: do the same thing every day for a hundred days — draw a doodle, write a poem, whatever — and document the results.

    San Francisco–based designer Katrina McHugh responded by making infographics based on popular song lyrics that reference the natural world, mirroring the style of vintage encyclopedias she inherited from her grandfather. The project, titled “100 Days of Lyrical Natural Sciences,” is a gorgeous and hilarious exercise in taking metaphor too literally…

    Try your hand at identifying the songs in question at “Classic Pop Songs, Reimagined as Infographics.”

    * Brian Wilson

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    As we tap our toes, we might spare a thought for Cabell “Cab” Calloway III; he died on this date in 1994.  A master of scat singing and led one of the United States’ most popular big bands from the start of the 1930s to the late 1940s, regularly performing at the Cotton Club in Harlem.  His band featured performers including trumpeters Dizzy Gillespie and Adolphus “Doc” Cheatham, saxophonists Ben Webster and Leon “Chu” Berry, New Orleans guitar ace Danny Barker, and bassist Milt Hinton.  His “Minnie the Moocher” was the first jazz record to sell 1 million copies.

    email readers click here for video

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:14 on 2016/07/10 Permalink
    Tags: Castiles, , influences, infographics, , , springsteen, Surf 'n See Club,   

    “Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid”*… 

     

    On a theme we’ve visited before, an interactive map of the influences at play in the development of the musical genres we enjoy, from the general…

    … to the specific…

    … with navigational aids and background, to boot.

    Explore at MusicMap. (And for a complementary take, try Every Noise at Once.)

    * Frank Zappa

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    As we hum along, we might recall that it was on this date in 1966 that The Shangri-Las, Johnny Tillotson, and “Many More”– including a band called “the Castiles” (which featured vocalist Bruce Springsteen) performed at the Surf ‘n See Club in Seabright, New Jersey.

    From the July 1966 issue of “Mod Magazine,” a Jersey Shore teen publication

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