Development – Stage 1

The development part was divided into several parts: Firstly, I wanted to create emphasis on the rank third in the prevalence rate of Diabetes. It would be the main focus in my artifact as it is of much concern for a small country like Mauritius.

Stage 1.1

Thus, I have started with the number 3. I have tried several types that can be used for the number three that creates a better impact. The overall result was not up to my satisfaction.

Stage 1.2

I moved on to create my own number. I have started with circles and converted to sectors to turn it into a symmetrical figure. The process can be seen in the above picture. During the process, I have seen that the upper and lower part of the number three can be used to represent two sets of data in form of a pie chart. Therefore, the number three would have a dual purpose.

Stage 1.3

I developed the idea further and included the key message with the number three which can be read as follows: Mauritius is classified third in the world in the prevalence rate in Diabetes.  The outcome was up to my satisfaction, thus, I can proceed further with the statistical information.

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Experimentation with Colour Combination

Aesthetics is a very important aspect in information design or data visualisation. The overall design has to be aesthetically pleasing so that the viewer is interested in seeing and reading the content and the message conveyed by the artefact. One aspect explored here is the colour combination to be used for the information design or infographic on Diabetes.

Example 1

Colour Comb1

In this first example the colour of the charts have been changed from black to blue which is more attractive. The blue colour has been selected as it is the colour chosen by the International Diabetes Federation. It is to give a universal identity for Diabetes.

Example 2

Colour Comb2

In the second example the background of the artefact has been changed to a grey textured background. This type of background has been selected as it enhances the overall appearance of the artefact providing it with some depth.

Example 3

Colour Comb3

An effect has been added to the backgroung to give this dark red colour. This colour has been chosen as it makes the user to think of blood and this colour represents danger. At a glance the viewer would grasp that this artefact is dealing with something serious.

The same kind of experimentation was done for the selection of types and layout design which are shown in the development stages of the artefact.

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Experimentation with Charts

Using the data of prevalence rate by age group obtained at the Health Statistics Office, I have experimented with the three main types of chart namely: Line graph, Bar chart and Pie chart in order to be able the select the most appropriate chart which displays the data more effectively and which would be the easiest the  viewer to interpret.


Line Graph

Balck line

This line graph is not appropriate with this type of data as the data is not continuous even though the axes are well labelled the data is displayed above each data point on the graph. Line graph is more effective to show evolution or trend of a variable in a lapse of time and not suitable for grouped data.


Bar Chart

Black bar

Bar cart is one of the most common type of chart to display statistics. It consists of vertical or horizontal bars to compare a set of data. On one axis there is the category (in this case age group) and on the other one shows a scale for discrete values (% of prevalence rate). The height of each bar is directly proportinal to its value assigned to it.

As it can be seen the data is well displayed using bar chart. All data are clearly visible and not confusing. There is no loss of data as the value for each age group is displayed on the top of each column. Both axes are well labelled and their values clearly visible. The viewer can interpret the chart at one glance.


Pie Chart

Black pie

A pie chart consists of a number of sectors. Each sector illustrate a data which is proportional to the angle of the sector, therefore, the bigger the angle or size of the sector, the bigger is its value. Pie chart is an efficient way to compare a set of variable.

As in the previous example, there is no loss of data. All the data are clearly displayed. The chart is easy to interpret and easy to understand at a glance. Compare to bar chart, pie chart is more flexible in terms of design and can be illustrated in unconventional manner.

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Layout Design

Here are my initial sketches for the layout design of all the information to be included. It would consist of charts, texts and pictograms. It must be easily understood and grasped at one glance.031220122573


Classification of Information

After thorough research on Diabetes, I have classified the information into various categories to be included in my artefact. The aim is to sensitise the general public on the Non-Communicable Disease of Diabetes Mellitus as Mauritius is classified third in the world with a prevalence rate of 24% and first in the death rate due to Diabetes. It consists of the following:

Classification of Information


Gathering Information on Diabetes

A research work was carried out to obtain information on Diabetes Mellitus in Mauritius. Government bodies such as the Health Statistics Office and the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life was contacted for statistical information and other type of information as well. Other sources were used such as newspaper and the interne.


A news article from Defi Media Group, an important newspaper and radio group, stating that Mauritius is ranked third in the world with a prevalence rate of 24% in Diabetes.

Cause of Death

Statistics obtained from the Health Statistics Office of the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life on the cause of death due to diseases by age group and sex and combined.


Statistics obtained from the Health Statistics Office of the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life on the prevalence rate if Diabetes in Mauritius for 2011 by age group and sex and combined.


Investigating into Information Design (General)

Megan Jaegerman has produced some of the finest news graphics when she worked at The New York Times from 1990 to 1998. She combined graphics, texts, tables and images to explain the content. Eward Tufte said “Her work is elegant, smart, finely detailed, inventive, and informative. A fierce researcher and reporter, she writes gracefully and precisely. Her best work is the best work in news graphics.”

Example 1:


Available at

An example of Megan Jaegerman infographics published in ‘The New York Times’ shows how an individual leaves his digital print behind unconsciously and which is latter used for targeted personalise marketing. The top part consists of illustrations showing numerous ways of digital print being left behind and the bottom part consists of short and clear explanation. There is a clear flow in both the illustrations and the description which are easy to understand. A Roman type is used for the title as it was published in a newspaper and sans serif types for other descriptions. It is an effective mean to educate the public as the viewer has less to read and more to understand with the aid of illustrations.

Example 2:


Available at

Another example of of Megan Jaegerman infographics published in ‘The New York Times’ showing the process of obtaining citizenship in the United States. Once again the designer has used a combination of both illustrations and description to convey the required information. The illustrations are monochrome but simple to understand. Arrows have been used to ease the reading flow as the flow is not straight forward. Sans serif type has been used for all written information. The descriptions are short precise and clear to understand.

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Investigating into Information Design (Health) – Part 2

Example 3


Available at!prettyPhoto-31112/0/

This infographics is about Diabetes in UK. It provides information on Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes, symptoms, how to reduce the risk and myths. The information are separated using different coloured background. There is less statistics and more written information. Not must visual communication elements have been used for the design of this infographics.

Example 4


Available at

The infographics represents statistics about Coronary Heart Disease in UK. The designer has used a contemporary approach to illustrate his data rather than using conventional charts such as bar chart or pie chart. The area of the square is proportional to the data. Two types of data are illustrated and are clearly identified by the red and blue colour. The blue tone part illustrates the number of death due to Coronary Heart Disease in UK and the red tone part illustrates the number of people living with a heart failure.

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Investigating into Information Design (Health) – Part 1

Some examples and analysis showing information design or data visualisation used in the health sector to sensitise or to be used in public campaign to convey specific message. The information is condensed to be easily grasped by the general public.

Example 1


Available at

This infographics provides statistics on Diabetes in USA. The title is written in large type. The numbers are in varied sizes. This is done to create emphasis on the most important numbers and in bigger size such as ‘8%’ and ‘60%’. The other numbers are also written a  bigger size. Dotted arrows is used to ease the reading flow for the viewer. Pictograms, maps and other graphics are used to enhance the  visual communication of the poster. Sans Serif types have been used for all written information as they are easy to read. Written information is short and precise. The colour combination could have been better.


Example 2


Available at

The infographics provide information and statistics on infections assiciated with the healthcare sector in the USA. Here once again the most important information are written in the largest type to create emphasis. It is to show the importance of these information for the viewer. Various types of statistical charts have been used to illustrate statistical information such as picto chart, bar chart, histogram and piechart. Sans Serif lettering is used to ease reading for the viewer. The type used is Sans Serif as it is easy to read.

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Historical Context (Pictograms)

In the 1920’s Otto Neurath has developed series of Isotypes to be used as a universal language. Otl Aicher on the other hand is well known for his various disciplinary sports pictograms that he created for the 1972 Munich Olympics. Pictograms are an effective means to convey information visually. This form of communication would be used in the design of my artefact on Diabetes as I want to convey information in a more visual manner.

Otto Neurath’s Isotypes


Available at

Otto Neurath, an Austrian sociologist and political economist developed a series of Isotypes to be used as a visual communication system. The Isotypes were designed in the most simple way eliminating details such as colour and perspective.

Otl Aicher’s 1972 Munich Olympics. Pictograms


Available at

Otl Aicher’s pictograms for the 1972 Munich Olympics were created to show various soprts disciplines visually. It was used in the Olympic village to indicate the way for athletes and visitors transcending the language barrier. It was created using a grid system. This kind of pictogram has been then used to develop public signs that are used nowadays.


Bierut, Michael (2004) The Graphic Design Olympics. Available at [Accessed on 14 November 2012]

Popova, Maria (2011) Vintage Visual Language: The Story of Isotype. Available at [Accessed 13 November 2012]

Popovic, John Jan (2010) Olympic Games Pictograms. Available at [Accessed on 14 November 2012

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