Data Visualization

April 12, 2021

Oftentimes you may be asked to present complex information or data on your website. You may need to report tables of data, a percentage breakout, or weekly numbers. For a solution, look no further than data visualization, a component of the Folwell theme.

Benefits of data visualization:

  • Allows for visual interpretation
  • Compares data across time periods
  • Displays complex information in a simple way
  • Tells a story
  • Improved reporting
  • Helps to grasp information quickly

Data visualization has been built into the Folwell design system, so your website comes equipped with the tools you will need to set it up. To learn more about best practices and when to use each type of visualization, visit the data visualization page on the Folwell website.

Folwell data visualization component is using a modern SVG-based, multi-platform and accessible Highchart library. The Highchart library adds accessibility layers to make the data visualization compatible with assistive technologies and improve usability to reach a broader audience.

The COVID-19 Dashboard is an example of data visualization in action.

Things to consider when implementing data visualization:

  • When you have many data points, a data visualization may complicate how the user is able to interpret the information.
  • Choosing the correct data visualization is crucial, otherwise the user may not interpret the information correctly.
  • Don’t overcomplicate. When the data you need to display is simple, it may not require a data visualization.
  • While 3D charts may be visually appealing, they may distort the reality of the data. Consider using 2D charts over 3D.

If you are interested in learning more about advanced data visualization, please email brand@umn.edu.