Striking the Balance Between Airline Prices and Service

Yesterday I took a look at the Alaskan Airlines and Virgin America merger. Part of the disappointment on the internets centres around the service and experience delivered by Virgin. I mean who doesn’t like mood lighting, right? Well the Economist took a look at international airlines by both price and service. And if we use Virgin Atlantic as the best proxy for Virgin America, you can see why people prefer it over American carriers.

Price vs. service
Price vs. service

Credit for the piece goes to James Tozer.

The Muslim Split in the Middle East

Turning away from selfies and returning to the upbeat world of the Middle East, today we look at a graphic from the Economist that breaks down the Middle East into the Sunni and Shia sects. See anything that looks familiar? Do you know how Saudi Arabia and Iran are feuding at the moment? Well, take a look at the predominant sect in each country.

Sunni vs. Shia
Sunni vs. Shia

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s Data Team.

Trump’s Poll Ratings

The news this morning carried the latest polling data out of Iowa for the Republicans. And in that state, Ted Cruz now polls above Donald Trump. And so I wanted to share this post from the Economist last week that looks at how Trump rises every time he says something ridiculous. Could it just be that we should expect even more ridiculous this week?

Trump rises the lower he goes
Trump rises the lower he goes

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s Data Team.

The Safe List

Migrants and refugees continue to reach Europe. But some of those people can be sent back, depending upon their country of origin. The tricky part is that there is no common set of countries as this graphic from the Economist shows.

The safe list
The safe list

In terms of design, we see nothing too elaborate here. This is really just a table where checks, half-checks, and exes would have sufficed. But, sometimes, a table is really all you need to convey the important data.

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s Data Team.

New Population Estimates

The UN released some new population estimates. And no surprise here, the world is still getting larger and a lot of that growth will be in Africa. But the Economist put together a graphic looking at some of the forecasts, including the ever popular bragging rights of “Who is the Largest Country?”

Population growth forecasts
Population growth forecasts

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist Data Team.

British Parliament Timeline

For those of you who don’t know, the British Parliament was dissolved today ahead of the 7 May elections. In other words, it is now election time. Last week the Economist published a small interactive piece that allows you to look at the composition of the British Parliament from 1870 through today.

Parliament over the years
Parliament over the years

While many (some?) of us would remember times from recent history, e.g. the 1997 electoral victory of Tony Blair, the memory might be a bit foggier one hundred years in the past. But to help you, if you click on a particular year, the view changes from an overview to a focus on Parliament in that particular year.

Parliament in 1915
Parliament in 1915

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s Data Team.

Lee Kuan Yew Built Modern Singapore

Lee Kuan Yew died this weekend. He is lately responsible for designing and implementing the policies that transformed Singapore from a poor fishing village to a commercial hub. The transformation came at a price of course. Singapore enjoys limited free speech and the country is effectively a one-party state, with the one party now controlled by Lee Kuan Yew’s son. Regardless of the faults, the transformation itself is remarkable. And the Economist put together a timeline to showcase that.

The Life of Lee Kuan Yew and Singapore's development
The Life of Lee Kuan Yew and Singapore’s development

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s graphics department.

Military Hardware

Earlier this week we looked at Ukraine’s loss of Debaltseve. Today we look at a piece from the Economist that compares the military hardware of the United States, Russia, and China. These are the mere datapoints on quantity, not quality. But it still illustrates fairly well why we should not fight a land war in Asia.

Comparing the numbers
Comparing the numbers

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist’s Data Team.

The Perception vs Reality of Islam in Europe

Last week’s terror attacks in Paris highlight the tension in Europe between secular Europe and those believing in Islamist values. The Economist looked at some of the available data and noted the gap between Europe’s perception of Islam and its reality. A quick figure called out for France, French respondents thought 31% of the French population to be Muslim. The reality is a mere 8%.

Perception vs reality
Perception vs reality

Credit for the piece goes to the Economist Data Team.

The City Liveability Index

Several months ago the Economist looked at city liveability, which in their words looks at safety, healthcare, educational resources, infrastructure, and environment. And, well, it turns out that Canada, Australia, and New Zealand do really well. The only two cities not in those countries within the top-ten: Vienna, Austria (no. 2) and Helsinki, Finland (no. 8).

City liveability index
City liveability index

What I like about the dot plot is the separation of the data into three sections based on city movement. Those moving up on one line, those moving down on another, and then those with no change plotted in the centre. The cities with the most change in each of the movement sections are then called out in bold. Simple, but clear and effective.

Credit for the piece goes to G.S., K.N.C., and G.D.