Archives for the month of: February, 2012

Matthew Ericson writes about when to map – and when not to map:

“[S]ometimes the reflexive impulse to map the data can make you forget that showing the data in another form might answer other — and sometimes more important — questions.

“So, when should you use a form other than than a map?

“1. When the interesting patterns aren’t geographic patterns

“2. When the geographic data is more effective for analysis”

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Tom Steinberg of MySociety writes simply about visualisation:

“There are only two kinds of data visualization in the modern world. They are Story Visualizations and Answer Visualizations.

“Story Visualizations are those produced by one set of people with the goal of telling a story to an audience. Think of a newspaper graph showing deaths during a war, or a map showing where within the country unemployment is highest.

“The second kind of visualisations are Answer Visualisations. Answer Visualizations are produced to supply an answer to a single question posed by a particular person.”

Worth bearing in mind when you begin to visualise your data: are you doing it to tell a story, or to answer a question of your own?

From feverbee on planning communities:

“They should apply Ramit’s two-qualifier rule . A community for shoelovers {qualifier 1} who who … {qualifier 2}

“This ‘qualifier 2’ should be either a demographic qualifier (young shoelovers, old shoelovers, shoelovers in San Francisco, budget-shoeshoppers etc…), a habit qualifier (who who love to go clubbing, who are shopaholics) or a psychographic qualifier (who believe in recyled materials, who hate shopping malls, are
introverts etc…).”

A recent talk by Newsgames author Bobby Schweizer has stimulated some more discussion on both the role of games in journalism, and best practice.

The need to avoid ‘tabloidisation’ is discussed in this post on OJB.

A roundup of Schweizer’s points can be found here, including “eight different uses of newsgames. They can be used to:

  1. Editorialize;
  2. Raise awareness about specific events and what happened;
  3. Simulate dynamics;
  4. Model issues;
  5. Recreate events;
  6. Teach;
  7. Portray experiences;
  8. Turn stories into systems.

And 10 examples of games used to tell news stories can be found here.