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The Visual Miscellaneum, David McCandless

2010/05/25

This beautifully designed and illustrated book grew out of McCandless’ blog, http://informationisbeautiful.net. In the introduction to this collection, he writes, “This book started out as an exploration. Swamped by information, I was searching for a better way to see it all and understand it… in a way, we’re all visual now…so perhaps what we need are well-designed, colourful, and — hopefully — useful charts to help us navigate.” And this book certainly qualifies. Collecting data on everything from health and science, history and movies, the environment, psychology, history, and food, McCandless provides beautiful, artistic, and astonishing charts, graphics, and illustrations. I would suggest, though, that some of his sources are not necessarily fail-proof; Google and Wikipedia are cited often and inexactly. Still, since this is the kind of book for the coffeetable, bathroom reader, or to be passed around at parties, exactness is not necessarily the focus. Those intrigued by the information cited should go to their local library to pursue further research.

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