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Data Driven Digest for April 3

Each Friday we share some favorite reporting on, and examples of, data driven visualizations and embedded analytics that came onto our radar in the past week.

Big Data, Big Money: Gregor Aisch and Amanda Cox of the New York Times just published a data visualization that predicts the economic future. (Or so they say.) The Yield Curve is a remarkable interactive chart that shows the cost to the federal government to borrow money for the last quarter-century. The chart gives multiple views of short- and long-term interest rates and 10-year Treasury yields – the same data economists use to forecast inflation and growth. You can spin the 3D chart at will, or click through preset views that present specific events and show the data in two dimensions. For comparison, the editors have also visualized German data and Japanese data in separate views.

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Tree Talk: We’ve been checking the TED website almost every day, waiting for the video of Manuel Lima’s talk at this year’s TED Conference to appear. Lima is a renowned information visualization expert and author of The Book of Trees: Visualizing Branches of Knowledge, a 2014 volume that examines the 900-year history of using trees to visualize data. Until Lima’s video drops (when it does, you’ll read about it here), check out 8 Great Data Visualizations from TED Talks on the TEDBlog. The image above is grabbed from Eric Berlow and Sean Gourley’s 2013 presentation, “Mapping Ideas Worth Spreading.”

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Bike Data: Chicago bike-sharing company Divvy has issued its second data challenge – and released tons of data – to encourage designers, developers and data scientists to visualize the 3 million+ trips people made with its bikes in 2014. The company has whittled 40 entrants down to the top 12, and posted contenders for a public vote in four categories: Most Comprehensive, Beautiful, Creative, and Insightful. We liked the entry by Michael Freeman (screenshot above, but click through for the animated version) that shows bike trips and busy pickup/drop-off stations by date and hour. (We only wish it had a pause button.) your-my-land

Data Song (bonus item): Erik Tanouye, who describes himself as “America’s favorite half-Japanese twitter person and NYC-based comedy writer and performer,” has created data visualizations of dozens of songs.

 

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