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The beauty of data visualization - David McCandless

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David McCandless turns complex data sets, like worldwide military spending, media buzz, and Facebook status updates, into beautiful, simple diagrams that tease out unseen patterns and connections. Good design, he suggests, is the best way to navigate information glut -- and it may just change the way we see the world.

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  • Speaker David McCandless

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Additional Resources for you to Explore
To create his infographic about nutritional supplements, it took McCandless a month to review about 1,000 medical studies and design the visual. Is that level of effort surprising, and do you think it’s worth it? Try out the interactive version that’s available on McCandless’s website. What engaged or surprised you? What, if anything, would you change to improve the user experience? Write a brief review and post it to the site. McCandless says that “absolute figures” aren’t as meaningful as “relative figures” and he uses data about military spending and troop size to make his point [10:26]. How do you think most figures are reported in the media? When you consider how the media reports statistics about teens, is there an example of how absolute and relative figures could lead people to draw different conclusions? Do some research, pick an example, and create a poster that sets the record straight. Information Is Beautiful FastCompany: Infographic of the Day Datavisualization.ch is the premier news and knowledge resource for data visualization and infographics.
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TED Talk Lessons are created by TED-Ed using phenomenal TED Talks. Do you have an idea for a lesson? Create it now using any video from YouTube »

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  • Speaker David McCandless

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