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Visual Display of Quantitative Information
Envisioning Information
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Beautiful Evidence
Seeing With Fresh Eyes
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Gentle humor in design

For updating ID's, the sample ID shown is for Elihu Yale, who founded in 1701 what became Yale University.

-- Edward Tufte

iPhone video

For our iPhone video, we hacked into the network ID field on our iPhone and put in the names of fast networks that are nonexistent or not available in the slow-network United States. Thus "ET 3G," "WiMax," "700 MHz," and "DoCoMo" as shown above .

This idea of this prank was (1) to make a little joke about the very slow AT&T Edge network in comparison to fast networks, (2) to indicate that our iPhone redesigns are for fast networks, and (3) to see if viewers of the iPhone video figured out (1) and (2).

All this turned out to be pretty much an insider joke. (In 200 people at Google who watched the video, about 5% raised their hand when I asked if they noticed anything special about the iPhone network shown in the video. This reminded me of the amazing video of the moving basketballs and the gorilla.)

-- Edward Tufte

A humorous, self-referential graphic that comments on your theory of maximization of data-ink ratio. The original is at

-- Jack Schmidt (email)

Your books are full of gentle humor that require due note here. The one that comes most clearly to mind is the little "blip" on page 60 of the second edition of Visual Display of Quantitative Information (I believe- I only have the first edition at hand right now) when you are showing the graph exceeding the boundary box. I find the small bits of humor a useful way of lightening the seriousness of what is being presented without cheapening or demeaning the message as so many other strategies tend to do.

-- Ryan Dunk (email)

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