Journalism in the Age of Data

Journalism in the age of data” is a documentary about data visualization. It really made me think about some of my choices during the infographic project. I think I was so caught up in functionality –which isn’t a negative, it’s just part of learning Flash, that I forgot about aesthetics. I believe my infographic had simple design and good color choices, but I think I could have delved a little deeper. There has to be a good balance between functionality/comprehension and aesthetics. The documentary had an example of a flowing infographic that featured box office trends that was stunning, but hard to understand and read. I think this example will really stick with me as I create more infographics as a good guide to balancing these concepts.

They mentioned in the documentary that most interactive infographics on news sites are still built with Flash. They make a template that can be adapted to different information. They use the template and then plug in the data. I thought this was really interesting and I am curious about their code. I wonder if you can just attach an excel document and it’s automatically updated or if the data is something that’s manually entered. Another interesting thing that’s happening is the introduction of websites that build data visualization for you. Programs like Google Charts, Swivle, Widgenie, and Woordle use the data you plug in to create visualizations in a matter of seconds. I wonder how this will change the production of infographics and data visualization.

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