Saturday, January 28, 2012

Infographics Are Intriguing

I am finding infographics quite intriguing.  The visual display of data really draws me in and makes an instant and meaningful connection with the world around me.  It is relevant, inspiring, and visually appealing- and yes it will be your next essential hook to draw in and capture your students attention while showcasing the wonderful  world of understanding data all around them.  So why not create your own infographics on February 1st in support of Digital Learning Day?    Don't know where to start- well I have a few creative resources you.

13 Free Online Tools to Create Your Own Infographics

1. Wordle - Create beautiful and fully  customizable word clouds with this free tool.  Simply paste in your  text and click “Go”, or specify your own color scheme, layout, and  fonts.
2. Visual.ly is a brand new online  application which allows you to create detailed data visualizations and  infographics such as the one below.  They are still in private  beta-testing, however you can sign up for an invite now.  And in the  meantime, you can browse the Showcase of over 3,500 of the best  infographics on the Web.
3. Twitter Visualizer – This fun  tool quickly creates a personalized infographic of your Twitter persona  based on what you tweet.  You can create a solo infographic such as the  one created for me below or compare yourself to tweeting celebrities.
4. Creately let’s you build organized  concept maps, flowcharts, and diagrams for free.  Although they do have  subscription packages, users can create 5 public diagrams with the free  account.  They offer an easy-to-use interface with drag and drop shapes  that will have you mind mapping in seconds.

 
5. Tagxedo - Create a beautifully  shaped word cloud from your blog, tweets, delicious tags, news topic, or  any RSS feed.  Tagxedo lets you customize words into stunning images.
6. Visualize.me syncs with your LinkedIn  account to create a stunning infographic of your experience, education,  and skills. You can customize how much or how little is displayed within  the easy editing interface. Fonts, colors, and backgrounds are all  editable as well. Each position and educational entry can be moused-over  to view the full job/school description that is found on LinkedIn.
7. Stat Planet allows you to create some amazing interactive visualizations, which you can then use as is or create a static image. It can be used within your browser or downloaded for free.
8. Hohli is an intuitive, simple online chart maker. It’s incredibly easy to pick your chart type, add some data, vary the sizes and colours and see the finished chart. The finished charts are also very well designed and look great!
9. Many Eyes lets you upload your own data or use data already stored on the site. The visualisations themselves are well-designed and very professional-looking. This is definitely the easiest way to use your own data for online visualizations.
10. Google Public Data lets you easily take public data and transform it into an infographic of your choice. These beautiful, colourful graphics simplify and communicate the data perfectly.
11. Tableau is a free Windows-only software for creating visualisations. As you can see, these impressive graphs are colourful and quite unique.
12. GapMinder is a free Adobe Air (cross-platform by nature) application to ensure you have current data on major world issues and can create visualizations for your purposes. Data is updated yearly and released with new versions of the application.
13. Inkscape is a free vector graphic software available for many platforms. This is the ideal free option for the creation of your overall infographic. Simple and intuitive, you should have no problems importing your visualizations and combining them with other visuals to create your masterpiece.



Here are more great resources to refer as visualization tools to extend your learning.

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