Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Journalism can't just be words on a page

In the highly visual and interactive world we live in, it's obvious journalism has to move in the same way and interpret information for people visually. A good place to get information that can be a story with a visual component is Stats Canada.

I found some information about travelers to Canada, excluding the United States. I thought it was interesting to see how many people and from what country visit Canada. I think this information could be used as a story about tourism to Canada: what countries visit Canada the most or who is spending their tourism money in Canada. I also thought this information was interesting too because it's pretty recent. It' from 2011, which is up to date compared to some of the information on Stats Canada.

So here is the chart I found:

Country of residence 2011
July August September October November
Total travellers from Europe 193,519 191,745 196,759 195,948 199,285
Total travellers from Africa 7,629 8,067 8,129 8,304 8,162
Total travellers from Asia 111,838 112,149 107,879 106,958 109,861
Total travellers from North America, Central America and Caribbean 24,953 26,017 26,758 26,976 27,709
Total travellers from South America 15,683 14,990 15,786 15,576 14,397
Total travellers from Oceania and other Ocean Islands 25,672 24,902 25,816 25,179 23,875

But looking at these numbers in a chart isn't that exciting. So I put the numbers into Google fusion tables and this is what I got:

This one didn't work out so well...

I thought an intensity map would actually work the best for this data, but it didn't seem to be working for me when I put in my data. I think it's because I maybe needed to refine my locations, which just goes to show that visualization is a special skill that takes some knowledge and work.

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