New year, new ideas. This year, I’m launching a “Remakes” [Update May 2021: These are now called “Redesigns“] page to PolicyViz, which will serve as an ongoing repository for data visualizations that I think are in need a makeover. I’ll regularly post simple graphs and data visualizations that I think violate some basic principle (yes, pie charts, I’m looking at you), clearly misrepresent data, or could be improved in some basic way. I won’t necessarily remake all of them, but I’ll do my best.
I don’t view the Remakes as a place to spend lots of time remaking complex graphs or critiquing work at length. And I’m not trying to do a different version of the often-hilarious WTF Visualizations site. The Remakes page serves two purposes for me.
- One, it ultimately creates a library of remakes and resources for myself and my data visualization students. I have a combination of resources and websites I use to keep track of such things (Twitter, Pinterest, Evernote, etc.), but none work perfectly for me.
- Two, I’m hoping I can change the content and types of things I post on Twitter. I’d like to be able to write a bit more about graphs that I view need improvement, and to hopefully do so in constructive ways. I fear my posts on Twitter often miss that mark. Launching this page will also enable me to offer different types of content and links on Twitter in which I have interest: for example, more economics, trends in open data, the evolution of Hackathons (or Data Dives, Data Jams; whatever you want to call them), and how government does (or does not) use technology and social media.
This page will differ from my project site, HelpMeViz. HelpMeViz is a space for others to seek advice on feedback for visualizations. Here, I’m sort of taking out my frustrations on what I view as bad data visualization.
I’ll leave the comments box open on the page, so feel free to leave your ideas and responses. Or, hit me up on Twitter.