celebrating (almost) 100 posts with 10 tips

As I was looking at the underbelly of my blog the other day (the side only I see that has info on posts, pageviews, etc.), a number caught my eye: 99

This number described the number of posts I have published on this blog. Which meant that my next post (the one you're reading currently) would be my 100th. This seems like a significant number.* 

*Upon closer evaluation, 99 actually describes total posts... published + drafts. Removing my drafts makes this the 91st published post. Since 100 was a somewhat arbitrary number anyway, I decided to go ahead with this post now instead of wait for the actual 100th post. I guess we can consider this a celebration of 91 posts published!

It's amazing to me how the time since I began writing this blog has gone by...I've been sharing my thoughts on the same topic for a time quite suddenly better measured in years than months, with my interest in learning and teaching and writing about communicating effectively with data continuing to grow.

I thought I'd use this (almost) 100th post as an excuse to look back at storytellingwithdata posts over the past two years and handpick my top 10 tips for telling a visual story with data. Here they are, in rough order of my general approach to the visualization process (click the link for the full relevant post):

cole's 10 tips for effective storytelling with data

  1. Set aside time for the visualization process.
  2. Start with a blank piece of paper.
  3. Keep your audience top of mind.
  4. Generally avoid pie charts.
  5. Always label your axes.
  6. Leverage preattentive attributes.
  7. Declutter your visuals.
  8. Consider cutting gridlines.
  9. Employ visual editing.
  10. Use words to make your visual accessible.

Thank you very much for reading and I hope you'll join me for the next 100+ posts!