August 8, 2016
Makeover Monday: Who’s Winning the Summer Olympics?
With the Olympics starting this weekend, I thought we’d take a look at the most classic way that people display Olympic medal counts, as stacked bars. Being an American, I pretty much have only known NBC as the host of the Olympics, so when I went to their website and looked for historical medal counts, I was mortified. This viz is just about as bad as it can get.
What works well?
- The countries are ordered from most medals to least.
- There’s cute little actions when you click on the medals.
- They used appropriate colors for each medal type.
Seriously, that’s all I see that’s any good. This is an incredibly poorly done graphic.
What doesn’t work well?
- There’s no title.
- There aren’t any tooltips, so I have no idea how big each bar is; I’m forced to guess.
- I can only see seven countries at a time, and I can’t even see the name of the seventh country. I mean, who would ever want to compare only the 15th-21st ranked countries?
- When I click on the scroll button, it scrolls by an increment of 2. Why?
- Comparisons are nearly impossible with a stacked bar except for the total medal count and bronze.
Here are some of the changes I made:
- I separated out each medal into a dot plot and chose to show only the top 25.
- I included a summary next to each country to provide the exact medals counts.
- I included a mobile view, but in this view I remove this summary for a better visual look.
- I included informative tooltips.
- I included a title so you know what the chart is about.
- I included filters so the user can decide which Olympic games to include.
- The "sort by" option allows the user to pick the medal count to sort by making comparisons easier.