Visual Bits #234> It’s As Simple As A-B-C

Check out your links after the jump.

Not A Drop to Drink: America’s Very Real Water Crisis

In southern California we hear about a water crisis every year around springtime, when the cold is being flung away and our bones are ready to defrost in the warmth of the sun. Each year we hear about the water crisis, but what does that mean? The average American household seems to think that water flows from the faucet in nearly endless quantities, but while most people don’t think that water is something we’re in danger of losing anytime soon, this graphic shows why water quantity and quality should be a top issue. The four major components of the issue covered here: consumption, conservation, quality, infrastructure, and their interconnectedness.

The Growing Industry Of Toys In The U.S.


How did you grow up? Was it with copious amounts of toys to occupy your time, like a Gameboy, a GI Joe, or Barbie? Did you always have the newest gadgets on the market? If you answered yes to those questions, you probably grew up in the U.S. and can say you contributed to 26.8% of the world’s toy market… a market which generates a revenue worth more than the movie and music industry combined. In some cases, movie action figures actually profited more than the very films on which they were based.

Just the Facts: Visualizing Facebook

This great infographic explores the ins and outs of social web giant, Facebook. Created by Antonio Lupetti, the clean graphic features 11 stats about the site, from users globally to how long they spend on the site. Amazingly, Facebook will reach 1 Billion users sometime in the year 2012 which will be 1/7 the world’s population. Follow Lupetti on Twitter or of all things… Facebook.

Life Expectancy & Retirement Years Worldwide

Just how long do people in your country live and how long do they take for retirement? Life expectancy varies from country to country as does the length we reserve towards the end. This side by side comparison reveals that Austrians can expect many free twilight years, while many Mexicans are getting none.

Visualizing the Egypt Influence Network

“Egypt is the crystal ball in which the Arab world sees its future,” says Kovas Boguta, creator of this infographic analyzing Twitter communication surrounding the unrest in Egypt. The map is arranged to place individual Twitter users close to the people with which they communicate. The red and blue dots represent which language users choose to communicate with, English or Arabic (a choice that itself can be meaningful). The size of the dots represent the individuals relative influence on the social network as a whole.

Visualizing Facebook Friendships

What does the communication pattern of 500 million Facebook users look like? Intern Paul Butler from Facebook’s data infrastructure engineering team hit upon some interesting geographical data he wasn’t expecting. Starting with a blank image, Butler used a sample of 10 million users from Facebook’s data warehouse and used the powerful R project to plot each user’s location by longitude and latitude. He then added the locations of each user’s friends and connected them with various weighted arcs of light based on the distance between friends and the quantity of other relationships between others from the same city-to-city connection. As he performed what he called his ‘sanity test’ a rough outline of the globe was apparent. Countries and political borders popped into view… but more interestingly, the world of social connections and borders was visible.