Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Early reviews, recent interviews, and upcoming talks

We're exactly three weeks away from the release of How Charts Lie in the United States, and there's been some media buzz already. A few weeks ago I chatted with Jon Schwabish and the conversation ended up in his podcast. We went way beyond the book and talked about how to teach visualization.

Jon and the Urban Institute will host a public lecture about How Charts Lie on October 24; you can see this talk and others in my calendar. If you live in Boston, Washington DC, NYC, Atlanta, Columbus, etc., I'll see you soon.

I've also been in The Damage Report, one of the shows of The Young Turks network; the interview begins at approximately the 10 minute mark.

Publishers Weekly has a starred review of How Charts Lie. The reviewer captured some core messages of the book:
With the use of such graphics throughout media only increasing, Cairo insists, persuasively, that “just looking at charts, as if they were mere illustrations,” is not enough; “we must learn to read them and interpret them correctly.” [...] After offering a guide to different kinds of charts, Cairo presents the different ways they can mislead, including by using the wrong data or concealing uncertainty. 
And here's Kirkus reviews:
As this entertaining addition demonstrates, the “how to lie with statistics” genre is alive and well. In a cheerful introductory chapter, the author explains that, while writing was invented about 5,000 years ago and charts weren’t used until the late 1700s, both are encoded forms of communication with a structure and vocabulary. Readers receive well-researched information about the makeup of a chart along with the warning that this knowledge, like rules of grammar, is necessary but not sufficient. It’s essential to pay attention. [...] An ingenious tool for detecting flaws in charts, which nowadays seem mostly deliberate.
Kaiser Fung also wrote a review of an early draft of How Charts Lie. I hope everyone will like the book as much as these early reviewers did!