Sunday, September 12, 2010

Using Infographics & Data Visualization In The Classroom

Check out these 10 of the Web's Most Insightful News Infographics to learn more about the news with a quick look
Information graphics, also known as infographics, are a way of presenting information, data, or knowledge with the use of visual tools. Infographics are quite ancient; early humans, for example, made maps and other visual representations of their lives which can be seen today. Many people are familiar with basic infographics, like weather maps, which have small symbols to indicate areas of low and high pressure, as well as predictions for snow, rain, and sunshine. You've probably also made an infographic at some point in your life if you've ever drawn out a quick map to help someone find your house, or created a chart graphing data which you collected. These small units of visual information contain a lot of information when they are closely studied, and they organize that information in a very accessible way. Visual presentation of information is a powerful tool. Sometimes a complex concept can be more quickly understood with the use of infographics than through words.

The main goal of data visualization is its ability to visualize data, communicating information clearly and effectivelty. It doesn’t mean that data visualization needs to look boring to be functional or extremely sophisticated to look beautiful. To convey ideas effectively, both aesthetic form and functionality need to go hand in hand, providing insights into a rather sparse and complex data set by communicating its key-aspects in a more intuitive way. Yet designers often tend to discard the balance between design and function, creating gorgeous data visualizations which fail to serve its main purpose — communicate information.
In both print and web design infographics — visual representations of information, data or knowledge — are often used to support information, strengthen it and present it within a provoking and sensitive context, depending on designer’s creativity.

Here are some examples:
Explore Earth from the Tallest Mountain to the Deepest Ocean Trench
Our Amazing Planet explores Earth from its peaks to it mysterious depths.
Source, Exploring the wonder and beauty of planet Earth through exclusive news, features and images.

FarmVille vs. Real Farmers
Click here for Interactive Expanded Version

Subway Science: 500 Years of Great Scientist
Click here for the Interactive Expanded Version

Social Networking 2010
Click here for the original version

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