Mining statistics

June 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

Nothing out of the ordinary here. Just wanted to share a source for production and reserves of various commodities:

This is the source of the Wall Street Journal graphic above.


SSND online design winners

April 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

The Student Society for News Design announced its awards for online design April 19. Syracuse and Missouri had strong showings. (Above is the splash page from Syracuse student David Miller’s piece, “Jerry’s Cabin.”

Among the winners:


Web sites:

Circles of influence

November 17, 2010 § Leave a comment

For years, the Washington Post has produced “inner circle” charts that portray the individuals surrounding powerful political figures, such as President Obama, Hillary Clinton, and now Republican Leader John Boehner.

The diagrams show levels of influence as concentric rings, and categories, such as staff or college classmates, as wedges of the circle. The graphics reporter assembling the diagram needs a deep knowledge of the politician in order to assign a level of influence to each associate. The connections and coalitions are equally hard to arrange and often require reliable sources near to the politician to help with the placement.

The final trick is to get photographs of the dozens of people in the diagram, many of whom may be obscure despite their connections to powerful people.

Freeze! Zap! Bye-Bye, Fat

November 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

This Wall Street Journal infographic (made by Maryanne Murray) on how calories are converted into fat is an instant classic. Click on the image for a larger version.

Below is the link to the story on


Drone strikes in Pakistan

October 8, 2010 § Leave a comment


The New America Foundation’s Counterterrorism Strategy Initiative has emerged as the accountant of drone strikes in Pakistan, much like how Iraq Body Count and iCasualties have served as the keepers of the death toll in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Above is a Wall Street Journal graphic using the New America Foundation’s count. New America bases its figures on news accounts. It provides the date and location of each strike, as well as number of reported deaths and the name of the militant targeted.

Their count shows a spike in drone attacks in September as the CIA stepped up strikes to knock out a suspected terror plot against European targets.

Below, a portion of the drone strike Google map New America maintains.

Where dogs come from

September 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

Wired magazine has championed infographics since its founding in 1993. (Wired calls them infoporn.) I like dogs, so this diagram from Wired’s September 2010 edition had special appeal. The family tree approach works well until it gets to the designer breeds of the past 20 years. Rather than chart an illegible tangle of crossing breed lines, the designers cut the Gordian knot and tucked the new breeds into the bottom right corner.

I wish the diagram gave the source of the information. The article cites the American Kennel Club on the number of breeds in existence, but it’s not clear they gave the information for a family tree. Design collective Always With Honor ( made the graphic for Wired.

Extreme vertical

June 22, 2010 § 1 Comment

If you’ve scrolled down this far, you’ve seen what an amazing, extremely vertical graphic this is. It takes you from dizzying heights to crushing depths, and takes its time to get you there. While this graphic from Our Amazing Planet, an online science outfit, wouldn’t fit in the scope of many print and online page designs, it’s worth noting how a graphic like this makes a statement by busting out of a conventional shape.

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