A good chart tells a story. It is as simple as that.
Here is a fantastic example of what a good chart is. See the Time spent eating vs. National obesity rate chart below
It takes may be 5 seconds to understand what the chart is. And then you know the story. What is more interesting is, it instigates the readers curiosity to ask questions and understand the data. For eg.
- Q: Why obesity is high in countries where they spend less time eating?
- May be because of the fast food
- Q: What are the Turkish people eating for 160 minutes a day?
- May be they like the turkey cold. Okay, bad joke
The chart itself is very simple and easy. But it brilliantly juxtaposes two pieces of data: Obesity rates in countries and Time spent eating per day, to tell a story.
Are your charts telling a story?
Hat tip to Marginal Revolution for the chart.
More charting principles: Why KISS is important when it comes to charts | Vizooalization – 5 Lessons from zoo on visualization