The tragic events of the Japan earthquake, tsunami and their after-effects have played out on on rolling news screens and in print for every conceivable moment during the last few days. As more and more information is ammassed and collated by reporters, we’ve also witnessed its divergence in the ways it is being presented.
Infographics for Dummies have thus scoured some of the most reputable, infographic-friendly sites to bring you visual representations of the most horrific natural disaster the world has seen in recent years.
From www.livescience.com comes a comprehensive overlook of the earthquake and its subsequent effects: focusing on the epicentre of the quake, followed up by a diagram explaining how earthquakes lead to tsunamis and then gorgeous, colourful depictions of wave distrubution. A little GCSE geography, perhaps, but also an easier way of depicting what exactly happened without resorting to complicated technical jargon.
The BBC has put together an excellent array of interactive graphics – such as their fantastic map with clickable videos, which you can see here.
I also liked their little visualisation of the inside of the nuclear reactor – currently at the heart of every news report, which explains the interior of the reactor system. However, when not in context it’s mind-bendingly complex to get your head around (unless you’re fully versed in nuclear ins and outs) and necessitates additional text to make it accessible for your average reader.
While not strictly infographics, I’m a fan of the creative way that ABC news has tackled the before and after of the tsunami with their interative pictures. Click here to roll your mouse across the landscape scenes and re-enact the devastating journey of the wave.
The Guardian’s Data Blog has, as always, linked to an outstanding infographic (yes, we’re big fans over at Infographics for Dummies!). Click here to link to an interactive graphic produced by the New Scientist where you can change the dates and data input to map Japan’s earthquake history.
While you’re perusing The Guardian’s site, it’s also worth having a look at its interactive map which details the effects and worst-affected areas here.
A lot of these graphics are very science-based – has anyone seen anything with more emphasis on the human and less on landmass and geology? Let us know!