elective a: information design
Compare and Contrast Briefing Overview
Using information design methodologies, you are asked to make a comparison of the metro / subway / underground systems for six cities:
London, New York, Berlin, Tokyo, Paris, Moscow
Your comparisons will be based on the visual representation of at least six like-for-like criteria for each city’s system. For example: extent / length of network; number of stations; number of lines; number of passengers per day; peak capacity; frequency of trains; start and finish of service each day; cost per journey; funding and subsidy; etc. These are only examples. Consider your audience; what story are you trying to tell, to whom and why? This should inform your choices of data sets.
You may find when you start design work, that in order to make meaningful visual comparisons, you will need to edit out categories of data that were initially thought to be useful, and replace them with others.
Your use of visual representation should be clear and self-supporting and not require interpretation or reference to external elements for the audience (non-visual ‘ordinary people’) to ‘read’ the information. Your work should emphasize the visual and avoid the tabular presentation of numerical data. It is the role of the information designer to clarify not to confuse.
Your brief is to create an intelligible visual comparison of the six cities’ metro systems which reveals the similarities and differences between them. Format and media are unrestricted.
Lead tutor of Part-time postgraduate studies
London College of Communication