infob_700_1There was a packed house at SAPPHIRE NOW to hear data journalist and information designer David McCandless bring new insights to the Internet of Things (IoT). Not only did he make the IoT easy to understand and fun to explore with his interactive visual, but I think everyone came away with some insights on data visualization.

One of my favorite lines was, “That is where the story is – in the gaps, the links, the connections, the contrasts and the comparisons.” Data is meaningless without the story – the insight that you get from exactly those types of connections that David so expertly makes crystal clear with his visualizations. In business as well as journalism, the importance of data visualization is really all about bringing attention to what needs to be seen so there is a real eureka moment of understanding.

The best part is that you can download David’s interactive visual free of charge into SAP Lumira and then adopt it for your own (follow these easy instructions.) You can also play around with it on the Information is Beautiful blog.

Preview These Screen Shots from the Internet of Things Visualization

The first screen shot illustrates the Networked World, an interactive visualization to explore three key questions about the Internet of Things:

  • What kinds of things
  • How will it be used?
  • What tech is involved?



Here are some of the surprising statistics associated with Internet of Things:



There are stories about the connected home, connected car, connected cow, connected doctor, connected supply chain and connected business.



Replay of the SAPPHIRENOW David McCandless Presentation and Other Videos

We have many of David’s videos available now for you to watch:

David’s approach to the Internet of Things with SAP Lumira got some high level attention during SAPPHIRE NOW with an SAP press release, Computer Weekly article where McDermott declares SAP natively digital, IT Canada, Lifehacker and the Digital Conqurer.

Mico Yuk, founder of the BI Brainz and data viz author, was the lucky winner to have lunch with David and she found the conversation so enlightening that she recorded a short summary video. The big takeaway is that she feels that companies can improve their business intelligence adoption rates by following David’s advice to start with a concept rather than the data. By starting with the concept or story you want to tell, you don’t lose site of the goal of the visualization and the data falls in place to tell that story in a way that is compelling for better decisions. You can watch the few minute video here.


We also ran a photo contest, asking people to tweet a photo with a caption of “What would you viz?” to win a signed booked by David McCandless. The winners went home with a signed copy of David’s new book, “Knowledge is Beautiful.”


Data Genius Contest 2015

You haven’t seen the last of David McCandless at SAP – he’ll also be one of the star judges for this year’s DataGenius IV challenge. DataGenius 2015 is focusing on causes that affect all of us around the world. Start thinking about a topic, and analysis, that means something to you and helps tackle issues from the hyperlocal to the global. Another new and exciting aspect of DataGenius is that now you can use any combination of the SAP HANA Cloud Platform, Analytics (SAP Lumira, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio, SAP Predictive Analytics) and Big Data to build your solution. So jump on board and demonstrate your Genius – the possibilities are endless. The contest officially kicks off on June 16.

Remember to download David’s Internet of Things visualization into your own SAP Lumira with these easy instructions.

You can follow David McCandless at @infobeautiful or @mccandelish and myself at @AnitaGibbings.