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In our Data Visualization 101 series, we cover each chart type to help you sharpen your data visualization skills.

For a general data refresher, start here.

So far in our series, we’ve dealt with tools for clearly displaying two dimensions of data, but what happens when you have a third or fourth? Do you use a bar chart and stack bars with different variables next to one another? Do you use multiple graphs and compare the results?

Welcome to the bubble chart. This incredibly versatile chart form can be used to visualize a data set with two to four dimensions, all in one elegant and easy to interpret chart.

What It Is

In its most basic form, the bubble chart communicates two dimensions of data: one, a numerical value visualized in the scale of its circular bubbles, and the second in what each bubble represents. Simply put, larger bubbles equal larger values.

In our Data Visualization 101 series, we cover each chart type to help you sharpen your data visualization skills.

For a general data refresher, start here.

Like the mountains that they resemble, area charts are a representation of change over time. Whether you’re looking to chart net earnings for individual departments month to month or examining the popularity of music genres since the ‘50s, there are few chart types that communicate time-series relationships so well. Let’s see how area charts can work for you.

In our Data Visualization 101 series, we cover each chart type to help you sharpen your data visualization skills.

For a general data refresher, start here.

Bar charts are a highly versatile way to visually communicate data. Decidedly straightforward, they can convey the message behind the numbers with impact and meaningful clarity, making complex data easy to understand at a glance.

Let’s look at what makes bar charts so great and how to best use them.

In our Data Visualization 101 series, we cover each chart type to help you sharpen your data visualization skills.

For a general data refresher, start here.

Pie charts are one of the oldest and most popular ways to visualize data. This classic chart is the perfect example of the power of data visualization: a simple, easy-to-understand presentation that helps readers instantly identify the parts of a whole. Without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about the pie chart.

With design and publishing tools in nearly everyone’s hands, the world has been overrun by highly questionable typography choices—several of which we see (and cringe at) over and over.

Why are these fonts the worst? Two big reasons: They’re completely overused and/or they show a total lack of imagination. Here, we present the best (and free!) substitutions for the five most boring fonts.