INSPIRING STORYTELLING THROUGH COMPLEX DATA

Giving readers an instant understanding of complex data and tell the stories that lie hidden beneath the surface.

Project background

“WIRED magazine is where tomorrow is realized.” It is the essential source of information and ideas that make sense of a world in constant transformation. WIRED reaches more than 30 million people every month through print and various online channels.

We created several illustrations that captivated the essence of the complex stories WIRED tells. Based on a variety of data sets, the visualizations give readers understand complex stories and enable them to investigate the data and form their own perspective.

Client

Challenge

Tell the stories that lie hidden beneath the surface of data

Target audience

Wired readers

Solution

Print and interactive data visualizations

Result

WIRED’s visualizations are enthusiastically received among readers and have received awards from the design and publishing industry

Maps Bill Gates issue

Bill Gates was invited to be guest editor of WIRED’s December edition 2013. He included five maps that ‘could help solve the world’s most daunting problems’. Two of those were designed by us; about the performance of US hospitals and carbon emissions in the city of Indianapolis.

I think we've all been impressed to learn what a great tool digital maps can be. Here is a look at some dynamic data rich maps that help inform everything

Bill Gates ,
Founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Visualization of carbon emissions in Indianapolis

US hospital performance visualization

Bill Gates introduction (tablet edition)

Basketball visualizations

As the new basketball season was approaching, we created a visualization for WIRED about the basketball team Miami Heat. It shows how often the players shoot from each position on the court, and how many points those shots delivered. The result shows that while the number of shots doesn’t differ much,

Miami Heat players are more efficient in taking their 3-point shots. Ever since the book ‘Moneyball’ was published in 2003, interest in the value of statistics in sports has been on the rise. This visualization was created using a dataset from Accenture.

Tenderloin

The Tenderloin is a neighborhood in downtown San Francisco, California. The Tenderloin has historically resisted gentrification, maintaining a seedy character and reputation for crime. The neighbourhood has long been known as a last stop for the city’s most destitute.

But about five years ago, City Hall enticed tech companies to move in nearby. Today, the area is an oddball tangle of tech companies, social service centers, gleaming high-end apartments, and single-room residences.

Hip Hop listeners' visualizations

In the summer of 2015, 20 years after they dropped “36 Chambers”, Wu Tang released a limited edition anniversary album. The legendary East Coast band’s fan base may reach far beyond Shaolin (that’s Staten Island), but hip hop has a lot of subgenres—bounce, trap, TK—and most of them tend to stick closer to home.

To figure out which genres spread (and to where), Glenn McDonald, a data scientist at music intelligence service, The Echo Nest, used numbers from his corporate parent Spotify to quantify where the genre started and who’s listening.

Technology

Processing

We used Processing to render the graphics for the basketball visualizations. In post-processing these graphics were finetuned and the final details were added to make them ready for print.

QGIS

For the map visualizations we used QGIS to plot the geospatial data on a rough version of the maps, which were then perfected in Adobe Illustrator.

Result

Stats

6x
being reposted in other magazines, reaching millions of readers

Awards

SPD AWARD