Week 6: visualising data

I think the coolest part about this unit was all the real world examples we gained from Tim’s personal research. The next greatest thing was all the visual aids.

A Visual History of Which Countries Have Dominated the Summer Olympics is one such visual aid. At first I couldn’t quite figure out how this was relevant and then eventually I didn’t care because it was so fun to explore. The best part was discovering that China literally dominates in Table Tennis. Although there are some not so obvious problems with the way this information is displayed. For instance it doesn’t tell you how many people competed or what the ‘other countries in Europe’ are. Also the wavy lines are a little misleading at times.

The main part about this week was learning how to use Plot.ly. The reason for this is because for quite a while I fully intended to use this tool to help me get my data into neat tables to put into my website. I soon discovered that this was entirely pointless as the data I intended to use was already in table form. Doh. I did get to use Import.io to extract data from Wikipedia though, so not a complete fail.

This week was all about data visualisation, I get that now. It helped prep me for the following weeks when I learned how to use Carto and Google Maps which is another way of visualising data and which I used in my project.


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