#MakeoverMonday Week 2019-47 Diary

#MM2019-47 (2)

#Data19 has come and gone, but there are still seven weeks left of 2019, so it’s time to finish strong. This week’s #MakeoverMonday data set, ‘Smartphone Ownership Among Youth Is on the Rise,’ comes to us from Common Sense. Below is a look at the viz we made over this week.

mm2019-47

What works with the original viz

  • Labeling the years directly to the left of each line chart (although not needed as we will discuss later).
  • The line charts do make it easy to compare 2015 vs. 2019, for each age group. However…

What could be improved

  • Even though the viz has a label for age on the x-axis, it’s difficult for my brain to not want to think the line charts indicate change over time. Therefore, I would shy away from using a line chart in this situation, as it can cause confusion.
    • My go to for this type of analysis would typically be a dumbbell chart, like the image below as I feel it’s one of the best ways to show change between two periods. However, I felt the need to try something new, so I saved the dumbbells for another day.

mm2019-47.1

  • It’s unnecessary to label every mark on the view, as it distracts the reader from focusing on the visualization.
  • There’s also no need for dots and grid lines at every age increment. A better approach would be to swap the x-axis (age) grid lines and for y-axis (ownership) ones instead.
  • Changing the title to a shade of gray and color coding the years in the title (2015 blue and 2019 yellow) would remove the need for the year labels in the view.

My approach

  • I wanted the focus to be on the change from 2015 to 2019, so I called that out directly in the title.
  • As I mentioned earlier, it’s really easy in a situation like this to just go with a dumbbell chart. However, I wanted to try a variation of Jeffrey Shaffer’s progress bars.
  • Since the values for 2019 are greater, I set 2019 as thin lines in the background of the thick, 2015 gray bars. I then labeled the 2019 bars as the difference in percentage points from 2015 to 2019.
    • For instance, in 2019 53% of 11 year old children owned a Smartphone vs. just 32% in 2015. That’s a difference of 21 percentage points.

Click here for the interactive version.

#MM2019-47 (2)

Thank you for reading and have a wonderful day!

Jeff

 

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