Edward Tufte on Data, Analysis, & Truth
2 days ago
So much poor design has been made in the pursuit of “originality,” “creativity,” and “grabbing the viewer” (don’t try this in person).
I'm having trouble getting on board with these tools. Easel.ly, for example, provides themes, such as the one on the right. There's a guy in the middle with graphs around him and pointers coming out of his body. You get to edit however you want.
So in this case, you start with a complete visual and then work your way backwards to the data, which I'm not sure how you can edit other than manually changing the size of the graphs. (Working with the interface takes some patience at this stage in the application's life.) It's rare that good graphics are produced when you go this direction.
I asked students to share what they liked and didn’t like. Why was one poster successful where another wasn’t? In a few cases disciplinary biases impacted the posters they liked, but most of the time their preference was driven by design features. The posters that were striking, confident and accessible were the clear favorites.