Infographics and the Future of Digital Interactivity
There’s no limit in sight for the possibilities of interactive graphics. Recently, academic research has begun to confirm what some infographic designers already believed: If a static infographic is good, an interactive one should be even better.
In 2012, researchers from Stanford University and the University of Maryland wrote, “A single image … typically provides answers to, at best, a handful of questions…. Meaningful analysis consists of repeated explorations as users develop insights about significant relationships, domain-specific contextual influences, and causal patterns.”
Repeated explorations: Those two words encapsulate the power of interactive infographics. You want to make your interactives so compelling that the reader will explore them at great length. By offering multiple ways to explore your infographic, you encourage readers to find the patterns and relationships relevant to their lives.
Interactive infographics give the reader choices. So when planning your project, make choices obvious and interesting as well as easy to navigate (by clicking, dragging an icon, or hovering the mouse). Some companies are bringing interactive technology to print documents; this could be very interesting territory for infographic designers. Also make sure the graphic makes sense whether the reader peruses every word of it or just a small portion.