The Rise of Interactive Graphics (Chapter 9 of The Functional Art by Alberto Cairo) talks about the discovery of interactive visualizations and how they began in the multimedia world.
I enjoyed reading this chapter because I could feel Professor Cairo’s excitement through his words. For example, when he referred to the feeling he got when he was creating the interactive graphic below, back when working for El Mundo in Spain.
By looking at it now, it is still pretty interesting material and information. But the interactive portion of it is very simple compared to what we may see today, whether it be in El Mundo or in whichever other paper such as The New York Times.
In the image above, as simple as it may look – it’s a representation of what we as designers and infographic illustrators have to effectively create in order to communicate correctly what we want.
As Professor Cairo mentions in his book, “if you want your readers to be able to identify buttons in your graphics, make them look like buttons.” And this really applies to anything… and everything. If you want something to look like something in order to represent that thing, you’ve got to make it look like that thing.