From the distribution of creative industries to the temporal analysis of food and scientific breakthroughs, this month I’m exploring the theme of innovation in support of Capgemini’s 50th anniversary edition of the Innovators Race, a global competition for early stage start-ups. Let’s start with some fascinating insights into the exciting world of Kickstarter, which I think epitomises the idea of an innovators race quite perfectly.

The entire history of Kickstarter projects, broken down by city

Whilst we all have our own conceptions of US cities and what they are famous for, there are many less typical industries that are prevalent in smaller or lesser known areas. Polygraph has demonstrated an innovative way of mapping these creative communities, which sidesteps many of the issues found when relying on census and job data to accurately capture what are often low radar, basement industries. Using Kickstarter data, these bubblecharts quickly give a powerful sense of a city’s ‘creative centre of gravity’ and adds some colour to how we think about a city’s creative core.

Quantifying the evolution of individual scientific impact

This visualisation depicts the instance and impact of scientific research by quantifying citation metrics of thousands of publications. Using simple yet compelling visuals, this illustrates whether impact follows predictable patterns over the duration of a scientific career and therefore whether the timing of outstanding achievement can be predicted. The visualisation shows the ‘random impact rule’ to be just that.

Pairing wine and cheese with data science

The next visualisation uses developments in genetic and molecular analysis software in a new and interesting way. The interactive visualisation allows users to identify complementary wine and cheese pairings based on a range of factors. With approximately 1,000 ideal pairings between 100 different wines and over 250 cheeses, that’s as good excuse as any to get started.

The rhythm of food

Keeping with the food theme, this next visualisation uses Google trends data to investigate the seasons and rhythm of food around the world. Social and search data is increasingly being used by companies better understand their customers and inform business strategy. From the rise and fall of search interest, these visualisations reveal some interesting temporal and regional patterns. No surprise that search terms that peak in January include ‘diet’ and ‘quinoa’!