Makeover Monday week 51, 2017: Temperature Anomalies 1833-2017

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This week I’m just that little bit extra excited about Makeover Monday, because we’re playing with a large dataset on Exasol again. Not only do I get to check out the various submissions people create, but I have a chance to try something new with a fresh large dataset as well.

We’re looking at temperature anomalies and the original viz is simply stunning:

Can I improve it? I wouldn’t try, I love it the way it is.

What I like about it:

  • It has a very impactful story through the animation
  • Even without reading all the country labels I quickly get an understanding of what is going on here – this viz really lives through the animation of it
  • The colours work well
  • Countries are sorted by region
  • I love the centigrade scale for temperature changes. I can’t relate to Fahrenheit

What could be improved:

  • A brief description of what the viz shows could be helpful for lay people who look at this without context
  • I’d love to hear Antti’s personal view on the topic because he’s actually a researcher at the Finnish Meteorological Institute

What I did:

  • As I said at the beginning, I can’t improve the original viz, so I decided to take a different focus on the data
  • I wanted to use a heatmap as my main visualization, but didn’t know how to structure it best and what story I’d find.
  • I noticed that a lot of countries don’t have data until more recent years which skewed my view when looking at max temperature changes from one year or decade to the next because countries without data in one year would have a huge increase in the next year.
  • Having lived in Australia and New Zealand in the past, I decided to check out what happened down under and found my story: comparing the Northern and Southern Hemisphere. Most vizzes we build in this community have a Northern Hemisphere focus which means the year starts in winter and ends in winter, while summer and therefore peak temperatures are usually in July and August.
    Well, that’s the opposite for down under, so let’s check out this viz…


Click for the interactive version

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