Last weekend was not only the Game of Thrones finale, but also the Eurovision final. For the Americans not familiar with it, it’s a part music, part theatrics competition between all European countries and then sometimes guest countries like Australia or Israel. The winner is chosen by the total number of points their act receives. The UK, as one of the largest countries in Europe, is one of the few countries that is guaranteed a spot.
But that doesn’t mean the UK performs well. Last weekend, the UK bombed. The winner, the Netherlands, scored 498 points. The UK? 11. But the UK has been terrible for years now. And unlike in American baseball, it’s not because tanking gets you coveted draft picks for new talent. The BBC charted the placement of the British entries since its last win in 1997, the height of Cool Britannia.
Design wise, I wonder about the horizontal movement of places. A top-to-bottom movement might make more sense. The labelling here is also a bit too much. My eye immediately settles on the black text for the years, as their tight spacing creates a dark field that overpowers the otherwise nice light blue–dark blue contrast in the graphic. Maybe the beginning and end years could have been labelled with some key intervals, say every five years?
Similarly, the use of the ordinal number over the cardinal on the right hand side puts more emphasis on the labelling than the graphic itself. Here, however, the designers wisely chose a grey for the text so as not to overpower the graphic. But I wonder if the use of a cardinal number could have reduced the extra bits of text at the end and drive more focus to the graphic.
Overall, it’s a neat graphic. But I think a few small tweaks could improve the design. Unfortunately for the UK, they are more than just a few small tweaks away from winning Eurovision 2020.
Credit for the piece goes to the BBC graphics department.
I really like what the designers did here. First and foremost the key chart is a ranking chart showing the popularity of languages since 1988—Java and C have consistently been at the top. But other languages no longer relevant are not even shown. (Where are you, Actionscript?) Those that are both relevant and also mentioned are colour coded within the set.
But the truly nice thing is being able to use the empty space of the lower-left area of the chart to add some context. It shows the growth in Google searches since 2010 in searches for Python.
Bonus note, look at that rise in R since 2008.
Credit for the piece goes to the Economist Data Team.
Now that it’s Friday, it’s time for happy hour drinks. Well, maybe not quite yet. Let’s get through the workday first. But over at the Wall Street Journal, together with Yep, they looked at which cocktails are most popular in eight cities based on Yelp reviews. They do note that the metric is not perfect as people will complain about Manhattan in a New York bar review but not actually drink a Manhattan. But, honestly, when you’ve had a few cocktails, the maths are bound to get a bit fuzzy.
Of course the next step would be to make an interactive version with links to recipes. And from the visualisation side, you could cluster the data by drink bases. And no, the martini should not start with vodka. Come on, people, you use gin.
Pardon the title, but don’t mind the graphic. Sometimes ranking charts tell the story well. The Wall Street Journal has a graphic supporting a larger article about fish. And while I am not sure that I understand the reason behind the colours, they do make it quite clear that catfish is not nearly as popular as it used to be. Unfortunately the article is behind the pay wall, but broadly it appears that the fish on the move here might be banned from the US.
Credit for the piece goes to the Wall Street Journal graphics department.
Here’s a rare weekend post to showcase some Olympic-related work.
The following graphic looks at how the ranking changes for the Top-10 countries if medals are weighted. To me it is ridiculous that Kazakhstan is ranked higher than Russia because Kazakhstan has won 4 gold medals compared to Russia’s 3 when Kazakhstan has a total of 4 medals whereas Russia has 24. (All counts current as of this post.) So while I have been ranking countries according to their total medal count, what happens if I weight the gold and silver medals against the bronze?
It turns out that the leaders don’t change, but the rest of the Top-10 ranking gets shuffled a bit. For example, Japan has performed well at an overall level with 21 medals thus far. But only two of those have been gold medals and so its rank in the system below fell three positions.