The Friday project – week 8

I am a bit behind with the blog this week but I managed to add two more vizzes to my portfolio, and wanted to briefly highlight one element of each: the importance of preliminary sketches, and the importance of iteration.

Preliminary sketches

Makeover Monday this week used a detailed dataset on EU potato production, and I decided early on I wanted to take a more traditional, tiled, dashboard-style approach.

After some exploration of the data in its original form and in Tableau, I created a (very) rough sketch of my dashboard structure: an overall view (including tree map) in the top half , then the ability to drill down to see key metrics by country in the bottom half.

Here is the rough sketch and the finished viz side by side – it’s not going to win any prizes for draughtsmanship, but for a dashboard-style viz where a more disciplined approach is required, I find it an integral part of the development process.


Iteration, iteration, iteration

I also spent some time this week working on a viz showing the respective fortunes of Football League clubs over the last 16 seasons: The Ups and Downs of the 92.

Like the Makeover Monday dashboard, the main half of the viz shows the overall picture (a line for each of the 92 clubs, with the ability to filter by current league or club), with a more detailed view in the other half: in this case, individual graphs highlighting the respective fortunes of rival clubs.



But something was niggling away at me – the feeling that the top-left graph wasn’t telling the whole story. In the text I had referenced AFC Wimbledon’s six promotions in 13 seasons, but the graph only shows two promotions as the dataset I created didn’t go below the Conference.

Another iteration was required. I trawled Wikipedia for details of the previous seven seasons and added them to my dataset just for AFC Wimbledon. I wanted to keep the size of the axes in the right-hand graphs consistent to allow comparisons, so I dropped the bottom left graph.

It was more work, but the central story is much clearer for it: the steepness of the line and the inclusion of the additional four non-league segments brings home just how impressive AFC Wimbledon’s rise through the leagues has been.


Tableau Public links:

Which EU-28 countries lead potato production?

The Ups and Downs of the 92

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