Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Just to Infinity, Not Beyond

I'm still running. It's been on and off over the past few years. Melissa dragged me out to my first 5k on Jan 1, 2013, Commitment Day downtown Cleveland. Up until 10 minutes before the race I wasn't going to take part but this was a pivotal life moment where I decided to stop making excuses. I ran the race in jeans and it was just glorious in so many ways.

Coming up is the Cleveland Half Marathon in May and the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon in June. For the Seattle race I'm fundraising for St. Jude's Children Hospital. I love what St. Jude has done, I love their mission, and it would mean a lot to me to be able to support them.

I finished strong in terms of running last year and after a short break in January I'm picking up again for 2016. See the story board below with some data on my progress and where I'm going (click the gray boxes to navigate to the next viz). Please consider contributing to the St. Jude fundraiser. There's a link to my page in the story board.

Monday, November 2, 2015

My Redbox Problem

I just can't seem to get in the habit of returning my movies on time.

So I'm a huge movie fan. Action, drama, comedy, a bit of romance and suspense here and there no problem. It's all good. Over these four years we also had a Netflix account maybe two years and Amazon Prime for three. What differentiates Redbox (I believe) is that they get the new movies quicker, and some times the other services don't get them at all. When I rent from Amazon Prime it's usually $3 to $5 so at current rates I'm better off staying at home, clicking the rental and using all this saved time to do ... well I don't know, there are so many things.

On methodology - I pulled my transactions from various banking sites. The biggest issue preparing the data was figuring out (mostly guessing) whether I rented one or two movies since it would just show the date and total amount. If it was a prime number of days over 2 I went with one rental, if there were several within a few days I went with one rental, otherwise I guessed leaning towards one. This was easier to track prior to March 2012 because the billing methodology changed from "charge one night + rest when returned" to charging "all when returned." So if I rented two movies I would see two charges for $1.06, then another charge a few days later for the rest.

Though I'm hooked on the $1 rental from 2011 ads, rounding now it's almost $2/night with taxes ($1.63). So I don't know. I don't expect anything to change after this because I still like my Redbox. But hey it's fun to see money you're potentially wasting and that could have been used on other things such as ...

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Dashboard Design

I attended a workshop recently on dashboard design by none other than data visualization expert, Stephen Few. I highly recommend his workshops for beginners or experienced professionals.

At the end of the workshop Steve brought up several examples of dashboards from a competition he hosted in 2012. The purpose was to find new dashboard examples for the second edition of his book, Information Dashboard Design, where he can point out good or bad technique. I didn't make the book but I still have my submission so here's a short critique of my own work based on what I learned.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Location History

Next week I’m giving a short presentation on graphics to the Cleveland R Group.  I needed geographic data for an example so I pulled my location history from Google.