There are two types – the “tell a story” type, that make data come to life and give the user a better understanding; and the “work it out yourself” type, which allow the user to play with the variables and find their own story. The first is an extension of traditional journalism, but with far more appealing and engaging presentation. The second is more revolutionary, and allows the audience to become part of the story. Turning a spreadsheet into something you can use, or understand.
I'm not going to talk about audio slideshows. Or video. Or blogs. - the idea first question: is this really an interactive graphic? Usually the answer is NO. Shelf life. Appeal. Updatable? - the data Can be harder to come by than you think - People the design skills, a coder - a platform how is anyone going to find this? Promote, plug, shout - time You don't turn these things around in a day
Topics - what to cover, is it a story that will run for long enough? Events vs themes Originality - or following the crowd Niche - what will your audience expect. E.g. FT and sport. Are you the destination site for EU news? Then do EU data, not BP
Good - Classic FT story - who owns what? Has long-term value. Bad - Should we have spun a bigger story out of it? Made the text more accessible? www.ft.com/carcompanies
www.ft.com/unconventional Good - use of audio as well as data Bad - doesn't go far enough?
FTSE100 - FTSE 100: How the share index has changed www.ft.com/ftse100 Good - excellent snapshot of how things change Bad - data limitations, data availability
Oil executives pay www.ft.com/ceo-pay Good - find your own story Bad - data availability?
Deficit buster www.ft.com/deficitbuster Good: Find your own story Was top of the news agenda, cited by Sky, BBC, other papers. The story was written around the graphic. Bad: Give people the data! (again)
Campaign Finance - New York Times http://elections.nytimes.com/2008/president/campaign-finance/map.html
Just because you compare it to GDP / Population etc doesn't make it more interesting, or might make it misleading?
What is an "Interactive graphic"?
How do you build them? <ul><li>You will need: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- the idea - the data - the people: reporter, designer, coder, editor - the platform - time </li></ul></ul>
Why do you build them? <ul><li>Topics - what to cover? </li></ul><ul><li>Originality - what are the competition doing? </li></ul><ul><li>Niche - what will your audience expect? </li></ul><ul><li>Setting the agenda </li></ul>
FT Interative graphics - some examples <ul><li>.... and what did we did right / wrong </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>our main list is at www.ft.com/interactive </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
Elsewhere - (Not all about FT...) <ul><li>There are a lot of great sites doing this, but for ideas check out: </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>New York Times </li></ul><ul><li>Chartporn.org </li></ul><ul><li>Flowingdata </li></ul><ul><li>Gapminder </li></ul><ul><li>datavisualization.ch </li></ul><ul><li>and I've probably missed some other brilliant ones too... </li></ul>
What else? Questions, dos and don'ts <ul><li>Do you want your users to "consume" or "interact"? Pick. Give them the data? </li></ul><ul><li>BEWARE of statistical glitches / anomalies / leaps </li></ul><ul><li>Don't do it if it's not worth it. Will the story get old fast? Will people care in a week, a month, a year? Will the data change, and are you going to update it? </li></ul><ul><li>Above all - set the agenda . This is about news, and in the crowded news environment it's hard to stand out. Make a splash. Make the story about your graphic. </li></ul>