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A Wikipedia For Data Visualizations Is Here

The Data Viz Project has more than 150 types of visualizations.

You have one dataset, and countless ways to visualize it. Bar chart? Tree graph? The dreadful pie chart?

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Now all your options are in one beautifully designed location: the Data Viz Project, which has more than 150 types of data visualizations, all searchable by type of dataset (chart, diagram, table), input data, function (comparison, trend over time), and shape (square, line,  map).

[Image: courtesy Ferdio]
The catalog of data viz was created by the Copenhagen-based visualization and infographics firm Ferdio over the course of the past four years. Ferdio’s founders and partners Birger Morgenstjerne and Jeppe Morgenstjerne say they started with about 10 visualizations that they put up on the walls of the firm’s office to help inspire them. Because the firm’s designers work on visualizations every day, the data viz on the walls was a way of reminding them of all the different ways that one dataset can be represented.

By the time they had 50 on the wall, the Morgenstjernes decided that their Pinterest for data viz might be more useful if it were online. So they created a website for their team to use; they’ve only recently opened it up to the rest of the world.

[Image: courtesy Ferdio]
The site includes a variety of visualizations that the Ferdio team has come across during the course of their work, from recognizable graphs like a simple donut chart or even a classic transit map, to more obscure vizzes like the geometrically mosaic convex tree map or the delightfully chaotic sorted stream graph. Each type of data viz on the site comes with examples so you can see how designers have used it in the past.

“It’s a weird mix of mathematicians, statisticians, designers, and developers that have come up with all these data visualizations,” Jeppe says. “It’s constantly evolving. [Before the Data Viz Project] there [was] no one place to go, where there are the correct answers for how the data visualizations work. Wikipedia isn’t very useful.”

About the author

Katharine Schwab is a contributing writer at Co.Design based in New York who covers technology, design, and culture.

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