Data visualisations are helping to take data capture into the 21st century. When we compiled our list of five fantastic data visualisations back in January 2013, we marvelled at how the world’s top data researchers were displaying their findings in innovative, attractive and easily-comprehensible ways, but we never imagined we’d be ready to revisit the topic a scant few months later! The fact of the matter is, new and exciting data visualisations are emerging every single day, and it wouldn’t be right for us not to share some of our favourites with you. These five data visualisations show us how data studies can be simple, useful, revealing and even beautiful, so take a look at some of the latest data visualisations that have had the Document Capture Co. team intrigued this year…


evolution-of-underground-mapThe evolution of the underground map

Some data visualisations are brilliant because they’re stunning to look at and others because they’re ingenious ways of disseminating information. The London underground map is arguably one of the first true examples of a data visualisation – designer Harry Beck realised that a geographically accurate map could not display the required information in a truly legible way, so decided to produce a more stylised and useable image that has inspired every revision since. This excellent series of images on the BBC website shows us how one of the first – and greatest – data visualisations evolved to become a piece of cultural iconography that millions of people use to navigate the city on a daily basis.


longer-livesLonger Lives

We’ve been looking at the Public Health England’s Longer Lives Map a lot recently, and the more we do so the more struck we are by how fantastic an example of data visualisation it really is. The map displays premature death statistics for the whole of England by region, employing an instantly-recognisable traffic light colour scheme to ensure immediate legibility. The map contains the same amount of data as the accompanying table, but the data visualisation is a far more effective means of communicating that data to an audience than through ranked figures alone.


Pain at the pump


We all like to complain about petrol prices, don’t we? Well, this data visualisation from Bloomberg has put our own problems into perspective. Previously, data visualisations in the form of posters, graphs, maps and charts would be limited to expressing all the relevant data at all times, but now, digital technology has allowed us to add an element of interactivity to our data visualisations, too. Not only is the Bloomberg Pain at the pump visualisation a great piece of design, it boasts a level of customisability that previous efforts could never have attained.


Champions League comparison

Not all data visualisations are deadly serious. This one is most certainly little more than a bit of fun, and yet it still offers huge amounts of information for any interested onlookers. It would have been easily possible to display this information regarding the world’s richest football teams and their Champions League performances in a static table, but the interactive data visualisation is far more engaging, attractive and legible than any old chart!


Cancer-anyone?Cancer anyone?

Data visualisations are very powerful tools – they can be used to attract people’s attention and engage them with the data in a way that few research studies can manage alone. Data visualisations such as this one, then, are important tools when it comes to educating people about dangerous healthcare risks. The infographic form is an excellent way to draw the eye and disseminate information without the nagging tediousness of many healthcare information tools, while the visuals are shocking enough to get the point across in persuasive fashion.


All of these data visualisations are excellent examples of how data can be displayed in an engaging and legible way, but they each have one thing in common: accurate and timely data. All studies and research projects depend on accurate data for their success, so if you’re looking to work with data this year then make sure you have access to the most accurate, reliable information possible with the help of our flexible data capture solutions.