Data Viz Done Right

February 11, 2018

Makeover Monday: The Winter Olympics

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As the Winter Olympics started a few days ago, Rody Zakovich offered up his great Winter Olympics viz for a makeover. It can often be tough to makeover an already good viz, but I gave it a go anyway. Here's Rody's viz:


What works well?

  • Simple title and subtitle
  • Noting when he combined countries
  • Simple filtering
  • Nice small multiples design
  • Including summaries under each country name
  • Sorting the countries from most medals to least
  • Including blocks for each medal won

What could be improved?

  • Right-align the filter titles so they are next to the filter itself.
  • I'd prefer the gold medals at the bottom and bronze on top.
  • Provide an option to look at the top N countries so that you can see it one screen.
  • The x-axis doesn't make sense. If it's supposed to represent a year, why does it start at zero and end at 25?

What did I do?

  • Focused the visualisation on the cumulative medals won by the top 5 countries based on the filters; I did this by creating stepped lines based on Rody's tutorial.
  • Made the x-axis represent the number of years since a country first participated in the games; this makes comparing the cumulative medals easier. In other words, it's easier to see which country won medals the fastest.
  • Place the filter titles above each filter
  • Moved the notes to the bottom, out of the way
  • Simplified the tooltips

Thanks Rody! You're a good sport!

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