It's Super Bowl Sunday and I can't think of a better date to share my latest article published on January 31, 2014 on Statistics Views titled "Three Yards and a Cloud of Dust: The Evolution of Passing in the NFL". Did you know that passing wasn't even legal in football until 1906? Did you further know that it was first put in as a way to reduce the number of deaths occurring in the game?
Once passing was introduced, it was only a matter of time before coaches created new ways to utilize this powerful attack. Over the years, it has transformed the offensive game from a running attack to a passing attack, elevating the quarterback as master and commander of the football field. Check out the story here.
It's a pet peeve of mine when I see news articles out there which reference data without graphing it. In other words, show me a picture when you mention a bunch of numbers. Otherwise, I have to try and comb through the article without any visual aids to help my understanding of it. It's my hope that larger news sites will begin to hire data visualization folks to provide a graphical view of these types of articles.
Here is one such article about childhood abdominal pains and adulthood depression that, while well-written, could have used a graph to allow for (much) faster comprehension for the readers (me). Having said that, I created a graph and posted it at Graph of the Week to illustrate how it might have looked. Have a peek.
The data visualization industry - like regular journalism - is rife with opinions, errors, logical fallacies, sensationalism and every other news-related aspect you can imagine. Just because there is a graph to go along with an article doesn't mean that the article has any more credibility than it had before. That being said, there are also amazing stories with rich, intuitive graphics that showcase good data visualization practices.
Therefore, I've created a Blog section within Graph of the Week which will contain my take on any topic related to the data visualization/infographic industry. Additionally, I'll throw in some techniques to shed a little light on how these types of articles are produced (including mine).
It's going to be an eye-opening, sometimes bumpy ride. Hop aboard!
Last month I wrote an article for Statistics Views about Triple Crown horse racing - specifically, English Triple Crown racing. Did you know there was such a thing? As it turns out, it's quite popular and has been around for a LOT longer than American horse racing. It dates back to the 1700s whereas American horse racing, at least in Triple Crown format, didn't exist until the 20th century.
That being said, check out the article - it reveals a possible explanation why the British winners are increasing in speed while the reverse is true for the American winners. Hint: synthetic surfaces. There is even some discussion about doping in there and how that's handled in each country (it's vastly different).
Like most of the graphs I create, they are originally generated in 'R' and then (sometimes greatly) enhanced using Illustrator. Enjoy!
I've taken on a new contracting assignment with the Singularity Institute as a remote researcher and forecaster. The research being done there revolves around Artificial Intelligence, risk prevention and other AI issues. If you haven't taken a peek, be sure to visit their website and give it a once-over - you'll be amazed at the knowledge contained therein.
Some months ago, a colleague of mine suggested that I enter a competition sponsored by Significance Magazine. It seemed like a great idea as I've always enjoyed these types of articles as seen in Graph of the Week. This morning I learned that myself and four other entrants were selected as runner-ups; our articles will appear in the magazine in the upcoming months.
That's all of the detail provided currently. More to follow as it becomes available.
Many thanks to those who assisted in the proof-reading of the article!
to Tales from the Rhodes.
As the late, great Freddie Mercury wrote: "Let Me Entertain You."