World Natural Gas Consumption

posted Feb 14, 2011, 3:14 PM by Vishnu Anantha   [ updated Feb 20, 2011, 2:08 PM by Jen Mankoff ]
Vishnu Anantha, John Payne, Danielle Parnes, Christopher Reid

For our data visualization, we decided to make an interactive visualization that allows users to compare the natural gas consumption of a given country against the world average. We obtained data regarding annual gas consumption for the 45 most populous countries, as well as the population of these countries, and obtained consumption per capita. Initially we created a still visualization but felt that making it interactive would engage users and make them more interested in the information. Our final design represented consumption per capita as a circle. The world average remained as a circle of constant radius that was grey. If a country performed better than the world average (i.e. used less than the average), the circle was a smaller green circle overlaid on top of the original. If the country used more natural gas per capita, it was represented by a large red circle. We presented this information on a map that allowed users to click on the different countries to compare statistics.

After creating the visualization, we showed it to various groups of people. In translating the image to the program, the quality of the visualization deteriorated, and that was a big issue for some people. Additionally, we represented the consumption per capita as a radius of a circle. This misrepresented the information by accentuating the differences more than they need to be. Ideally, we should have represented the data as the area of the circle which would made it more accurate. In the long run, ideally we would have data for every country rather than the 45 most populous and we would find a means to display more information regarding consumption of other resources (oil, etc).
Jen Mankoff,
Feb 14, 2011, 3:32 PM