Covid-19, the third leading cause of death

For Scientific American, Youyou Zhou made a line chart that shows cause of death in the United States, from 2015 up to present. Covid-19 was the leading cause of death in April and is now sitting at number 3. The rise in unclassified deaths also stands out.

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Color breakdown of Scientific American covers

For Scientific American, Nicholas Rougeux and Jen Christiansen show the shift in hues for the magazine’s covers over the past 175 years. The changes serve as a proxy for technology advancements, changes in ownership, and shifts in thinking.

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Gallery of uncertainty visualization methods

It must be uncertainty month and nobody told me. For Scientific American, Jessica Hullman briefly describes her research in uncertainty visualization with a gallery of options from worst to best.

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Visualizing science

Jen Christiansen spoke about her extensive experience as a graphics editor for Scientific American. Her talk notes span a wide range of topics from the “rules”, the spectrum of visualization, and collaboration:

[S]ome of my favorite recent Scientific American graphics are the result of bringing together different artists—plucking experts from each of those groups and matching them up to create a final image that draws upon all of their strengths, not forcing one artist to excel in all areas. For example, I love to take an artist who can develop spot illustrations with a stylus or pen, and pair them up with an artist who can custom code data visualization solutions, as in this example by Moritz Stefaner and Jillian Walters.

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PhD gender gaps around the world

How Nations Fare in PhDs by Sex

Periscopic, for Scientific American, visualized the number of PhDs awarded in various countries. You might expect men to be in high percentages and women to be in low, but it's not always in that direction.

In the U.S., women are going to college and majoring in science and engineering fields in increasing numbers, yet here and around the world they remain underrepresented in the workforce. Comparative figures are hard to come by, but a disparity shows up in the number of Ph.D.s awarded to women and men. The chart here, assembled from data collected by the National Science Foundation, traces the gender gap at the doctoral level for 56 nations. The situation in individual countries varies widely, but as the numbers make clear, there are interesting exceptions to the global trend.

Each view shows a vertical dotted line to indicate where PhDs awarded are an even split between men and women. To the left of that dotted line shows where men earn more PhDs than women, and on the right, where women earn more than men.

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