The Top 5 Visualizations Of 2009

There can never be too many top-whatever lists, yeah? Here, FlowingData presents the best five data visualizations of the last year.

Taking the top spot is a time-lapse visualization of Darwin’s “The Origin of Species,” showing how the book evolved through the six editions published in Darwin’s lifetime. It was done by Ben Fry.

We’d probably re-arrange the order of these visualizations a little: the VMA Tweet Tracker, which received Honorable Mention on FlowingData’s list, should have scored much higher. Totally rad.

And yes, this has to do with jobs, because somebody is going to need to know how to do this. Media companies are increasingly struggling* with how to present data in an interesting, interactive, and easy-to-understand form. (This is why Fry’s Darwin thing gets a few points knocked off in our book; sure, it’s pretty, but what does it mean? The book’s all but impossible to read in this format.)