06 April 2007

What is infography?

This year's Malofiej competition is notable because for the first time ever, an interactive graphic was the only winner for the "best in show" award.

This sparked a lot of conversation about "what is an infographic?" As infographics go online, the line between infography and software begins to blur. Where does infography end and interface design begin?

About a week ago I had an interesting conversation with Juan Velasco, Graphics editor of National Geographic, where we tried to answer some of these questions. It's the beginning of a manifesto -- can you help us make it better?


1. It's a visual explanation that helps you more easily understand, find or do something.
2. It's visual, and when necessary, integrates words and pictures in a fluid, dynamic way.
3. It stands alone and is completely self-explanatory.
4. It reveals information that was formerly hidden or submerged.
5. It makes possible faster, more consistent understanding.
6. It's universally understandable.

1 comment:

Gabriel said...

I suggest another points:

a) It reachs the left side of the reader's brain in a fast and effortless way. So the reader could take a decision faster based on the emotions and intuitions awoken by the infographic.

b) It's focused on the points that really matter

c) It's universal but it's target oriented.

d) It's enjoyable for the reader (at least more than a 30 pages brochure without images and writen with Arial 9 point at single space)

e) An infographic could be a "functional piece of art" (why not? Chris Ware had made several works that demonstrate this point)