This topic may seem like one that wouldn’t be traditionally graphed, but in the category of data visualization I feel “The Life of A Hashtag” is a perfect example of the power of data visualization.
Taken from Visual.ly, “The Life of A Hashtag” is an interactive infographic that takes the hashtag that you input in real time and tells you multiple statistics about it. According to Google Dictionary, an infographic is “a visual image such as a chart or diagram used to represent information or data”. This infographic tells the viewer (referring to the past month) the number of tweets including the hashtag selected, the most influential tweet and the current most influential tweet to date as well as others. For the sake of this blog post, I decided to input the hashtag “#GoBlue” into the function input and was very interested with the results. So if you’re wondering what the life of “#GoBlue” looks like, it is something like this:
Interpreting the data, I found this infographic very effective. “The Life of A Hashtag” told me things about the hashtag “#GoBlue” that I would have never known, such as the most popular person to tweet it this month was @ParisLemon, who surprisingly has more followers than The University of Michigan Men’s Basketball Team. The infographic also has a line graph that shows the spikes in activity in the past month of “#GoBlue” and there is a large jump around February 23. This shows a limiting factor of the infographic because there is no explanation, other than common knowledge. By common knowledge, I simply mean that if the reader lives in Ann Arbor, or follows Michigan Men’s Basketball, they would know that the men’s team played, and beat, Michigan State University by 9 points with a final score of 79-70.
My final thoughts on this infographic are that I believe this is a great tool for representing data. I really enjoyed the fun colors, texts and graphs, and specifically in this example I enjoyed the interactiveness. Although this is a great tool, all data visualization has its limits and nothing is 100% without text to help explain it.