Information graphics

I was pleased to hear that The Guardian’s graphics team have won a clutch of medals at this years Malofiej Infographics Awards – awards dedicated to communication graphics in newspapaers, magazines and the internet.

I’ve often admired the beautifully simple and stylish graphical way The Guardian present data and recently blogged about the ‘The internet’s undersea world’, a double age spread printed in The Guardian in February that I still have blue-tacked to the wall above my desk.

Interestingly, for the second consecutive year the ‘Best of Show’ winner was for an online entry, Deadly Rampage at Virginia Tech, for The New York Times online edition.

Last year, for the first time in its 15 year history, the ‘Best of Show’ winner was Sector Snapshot an online entry from The New York Times. It analyses daily behaviors by sector of the companies in the major stock indexes and is based on daily changing databases. This is an example of where the boundary lines start to blur between information graphics and applications.

The internet is perfectly placed to display interactive information graphics. Unfortunately such graphics are all to often over complicated by unnecessary information and decoration. My advice is keep it simple. It’s the message that you want to get across, not the medium.