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Disney Characters

Steve Jobs counseled Disney CEO Bob Iger to think in terms of¬†brand deposits and¬†brand withdrawals. Since 1937’s Snow White, enduring film¬†characters have been Disney’s biggest brand deposits, and their success is most fantastically expressed with a dedicated theme park attraction in Florida at Walt Disney World. Track our favorite magic-maker’s Characters by the Numbers:

click for a higher resolution version

Story Points
Several plot points about Disney’s evolution can be inferred from READ MORE

USS Constitution: War of 1812

The USS Constitution set itself apart from her sister frigates in the War of 1812 – sailing under three captains through adventures which ¬†have forever since made “Old Ironsides” famous. Whether they be heroic victories against HMS Guerriere and HMS Java, or daring escapes, The War of 1812 made the ship the legend we love today.

Follow the Constitution through each major event and port of call – from her return to America in 1812 to the war’s end in 1815.

Constitution_War-of-1812

Design
The timeline of action the ship saw is read from left to right. Trace the vertical position of each event to the map at left to see where the event occurred Рone dimension of geography (this time longitude) is abandoned in favor of providing time as the horizontal axis. To learn more about the design of this chart and catch up on Constitution’s adventures from its previous engagements please see the InfoWeTrust posts on the Quasi-War and Barbary War.

Info We Trust is a data adventure exploring how to better humanize information. To learn more read the opening post here. The creator, RJ Andrews, is an engineer and proud Northeastern University and MIT graduate. Please reach out through facebook, twitter @infowetrust, or the contact page.

USS Constitution: 1803-1807

Constitution was called out of ordinary in 1803 and recommissioned in order to fight against the collected Barbary States, leading the third squadron to the Mediterranean in what would be known as the First Barbary War.

CONSTITUTION Barbary War Infographic

 

Once again, one dimension of geography (this time latitude) is abandoned in favor of providing time as an axis. To learn more about the design of this chart and¬†catch up on Constitution’s adventures from its previous engagements please see the InfoWeTrust post on the Quasi-War. Stay tuned to join Constitution on her heroic victories in the War of 1812.

Info We Trust is a data adventure exploring how to better humanize information. To learn more read the opening post here. The creator, RJ Andrews, is an engineer and proud Northeastern University and MIT graduate. Please reach out through facebook, twitter @infowetrust, or the contact page.

 

Horror Monsters and Ngrams

Google Ngrams provide a fascinating peak at trending topics over time by allowing us to compare the popularity of expressions in published books. For Halloween this week I whipped up the following sketch of some of Hollywood’s favorite monsters:

Ngram Monsters Infographic

Thoughts

  • Popular vampire movies since the ’90s (Interview with a Vampire, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Twilight, etc.) helped catapult our leading ghoul. READ MORE

USS Constitution: 1794-1802

Before the USS Constitution was the oldest commissioned warship still afloat, and even before it was nicknamed¬†Old Ironsides it was a squadron flagship in our mostly forgotten “Quasi-War” with France at the end of the 18th century. Learn more about the construction and first cruises of the Constitution in the first installment of a series that pay tribute to her glory.

USS Constitution Infographic

The design
Telling a story across geography and time on a static plane is difficult because it requires three dimensions – time, latitude, and longitude – when there are only two dimensions available. READ MORE

Government shutdown: a brief history

The United States is currently in a¬†partial government shutdown, but this isn’t the first time. There have been 17 other government shutdowns – or¬†spending gaps¬†– since modern¬†congressional budgeting processes¬†began in 1976. They have always occurred in the fall and stemmed from disagreements ¬†about spending within Congress or between Congress and the President. Many (1977, 1984, 1995) have resulted because the temporary solutions of previous shutdowns could not be bridged to stable long term ones. Learn more about the opponents and issues that have managed to shutdown our government:

Government Shutdown poster READ MORE

Navigating MIT Course 15

Perhaps it was the chemistry icons of Breaking Bad that drove me to organize the classes of MIT’s Course 15 into a handy table. Or maybe it was just reflection on the incredibly knowledge-rich environment of MIT Sloan. For students still taking classes, alumni combing through old notes, and the public digging through MIT’s fabulous open courseware (where over 170 management titles are available to all for free), navigate your way though the finest graduate business curriculum around using the Periodic Table of Course 15:

Periodic-Table-of-Course-15_poster2

MIT and class names
For the unfamiliar, numbers rule at MIT, and classes are no exception. READ MORE

Digesting Yelp

After spending a week eating my way through the Pacific Northwest I became intimately familiar with Yelp (as if I wasn’t already) as it guided me through a gastronomic amusement park.

I found that using the Yelp app on my iPhone was terrific in making some of the finer decisions (highlighting often remarked menu items & displaying pictures of dishes) but rather clumsy when making the most important decision:¬†where should we go to eat?¬†Yelp’s restaurant rankings never struck the excitement that their menu highlights did, and certainly did not approach the confidence that comes from a local friend’s recommendation. What was missing?¬†Yelp certainly commands a dazzling mine of data – but sometimes I feel it isn’t being leveraged properly.

Yelp today
Yelp displays search results in two ways, on a map and in a list. Both of these methods have fundamental problems, which we can investigate by a simple search for brunch spots near my favorite brunch city: Durham, NC:

existing-yelp

The MAP view, on the left, appears first READ MORE

Prototyping with Vermeer

Imagine seeing the entire¬†catalogue raisonn√© of an artist at once. What might you learn about the artist’s life and painting – favored motifs, density of projects, size of pieces?¬†What if Picasso’s blue period¬†could be pictured against the kaleidoscope of his surrounding other work?

Any quest requires the development of special skills.¬†I am currently exploring approaches for visualizing an artist’s entire body of work. Before tackling some of the big guys who produced hundreds of works, I am experimenting with the paintings of Johannes Vermeer – my Dutch guinea pig. His body of¬†34 accepted paintings is the right size to quickly produce a neat little infographic:

vermeer-infographic

Even this small gallery reveals the repeated arrangements of Vermeer’s subjects in the rooms of his house, evidenced by the common black and white floor and light pouring through from the window on the left side of his paintings. This Vermeer cartoon is a great start to my investigation of¬†catalogue raisonn√©s, and I encourage READ MORE