Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Let's Ponder (Discussion 2): Is the Change really Significant?

In the annual Town Council report, it reported the effort put in to improve the environment of the residents in the area it was in-charge of.

One aspect is the collection of refuse, which was a feedback by the residents.
The diagram shows the reported non-collections of refuse as a percentage of the total number of households in a town

Study the above diagram carefully.

1. Do you agree that the Town Council has made significant improvement? Why?

2. With reference to the visual representation, point out at least 2 areas that need improvement.
- Why do you think these 2 areas require improvement
- Suggest how to improve the representation.

Remember to include your Group number before submitting the comment.


  1. 1) Not really. The trash not collected is just 0.3% difference, but the trash bin is made bigger to smaller to show that there is a "big" difference.

    2) The dustbin is covering part of the line on the graph and the time interval is different at the November 2000 to April 2001

  2. 1) Not really, the only be improving by about 10%
    2)The accuracy of the graph and the visual representation, make sure the time between the point are the same like for this graph make sure there are 4 months between each point

  3. 1) I can't really say, because they did not show the readings in between the months, There might be a drastic increase in the percentage of refuse not collected during that time.
    2) The labelling of the graphs and the dustbins require improvement.
    - Like I said in the first question, there might be a drastic increase in between the months.
    -Also, they could replace the dustbin drawing into something more simple.

  4. Group 3
    No, although there is some improvement, it is not so "big". They are trying to trick us with the difference between each interval of each months.

    The months should be equally intervel'ed
    The dustbins should be more transparent and should be of same size
    All of this should be improved on as it affects the graph

  5. 1) Yes. the amount of garbage collected decreased over the years.
    - a. The axis which states the month and the years are not spaced out accurately. b. The months are at random.
    - Get data which is are equally spaced out according to time.

  6. Group 4
    I agree that the Town Council has made significant improvement. As the amount of refuse not collected became 4 times lesser.
    The first area that needs improvement is that the label for the y axis is "%" but the scale beside it shows it in decimal, it should be changed to percentage as writing in decimals give a totally new meaning. The other area that needs improvement is that the time between the months are not equal. It should be 4 months each in between the timings chosen.

  7. Johanna Lim Ziyun, Group 1
    1) I agree that the Town Council has made significant improvement as over the months, the refuse not collected has decreased.

    2) The two areas that need improvement are:
    -The intervals between the months should be equal. (e.g. 4 months) From November 2000 to April 2001, the interval is 5 months while the rest of the intervals are 4 months.
    -The representation of the dustbin should be of equal size. (and not one big, one small etc)

    -We can improve the representation by making the intervals equal and the dustbins should be of equal size. Last but not least, the dotted line in the graph should be a solid line. It will then be considered as a proper line graph.

  8. Group 3
    1. Nope. Even though there is a big change in size of the rubbish bins, if you look at the Y-axis, you would notice there is only a 0.1% difference.
    2. ~ April on the X-axis should be further away as while there is a 4-month difference between the graphs, there is a 5-month difference between November and April
    ~ The rubbish bin images are not suitable for a bar graph. Maybe they could all be the same size but transparent, with the amount of waste inside being the representation of the properties not collected

  9. Daris Ker Group 4
    The picture is meant to deceive your eyes. It wants to trick us! For Example: Between Oct '99 and Feb '00, the difference is only 0.1% but it looks as if it more than that

  10. darie(group3)
    1)It is not a big difference as the total difference they make in total is only 0.3%

    2)It requires improvement as it is a bad graph the X axis is wrong and this not how a pictogram work
    make it into a pictogram so it is easier to understand
    and make the dates even in the X axis

  11. Kok Li Ying, Group 1
    1. No. Though the difference of the amount is quite a lot, there might be some increase or decrease in between the months.
    2. The dotted line should not be touching the cover of the dustbin, and the month should be of equal intervals.

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  13. nope, it haven't been a much drop in percentage for the trash and the the graph presented is also not that accurate .

    the first one is that the difference in the years should be the same and the second one is that they should add in the percentage for the numbers.

  14. somewhat yes, there is a small difference but the graph has different sizes of trash can to show a bigger difference.

    Even though there is an equal space in between trash can , the difference in months are different and the line graph is a dotted line.
    The graph should be designed differently and the line graph should be a whole line .

  15. 1. I agree that The Town Council has made a significant improvement because the amount of properties not collected is gradually getting lesser.

    2. The x axis should be equally spaced, whether or not it is physical spaced, or information 'spaced'. Another one is they should use a number of the same sized rubbish bins for this inforgraphic.

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  16. Group 3
    I do not agree. There is only a difference of 0.3% from Oct'99 to Apr'01 but the emphasised size of the dustbin gives others an illusion that the difference is very big. Other then that the time interval in between the months are not completely equal.

  17. 1. Yesh! In Apr'01 there is a difference of 0.3% which may not look like much but it is actually 1/4 of the waste in Oct'99.

    2. The bins block the line and without the line, the exact amount is impossible to tell as the lids of the bins are tilted.
    The time intervals on the X axis are not the same.

    I would use bars or make the lids even and move the last bin further away.

  18. 1) The difference is not really that much, however there is still tiny improvement.

    2) The way the dustbin cover is positioned is inconvenient as it is covering part of the line and the date intervals are different.

    Group 2

  19. Jeron Group 3
    1)There isn't much of an improvement but there is still a small improvement.
    2)They should put their time interval at a same time and draw the dustbin a little better because the line went through the dustbin cover.

  20. 1. No. Because if you look closely at the reading in the graph, it shows that amount of uncollected trash has decreased by only 0.3 percent.

    2. There are 2 improvements that could be made:

    a) The Horizontal Axis should have been labeled properly, as the interval between November and April has 5 months, unlike the other 3 intervals, which only have 4 months per interval. This could have been due to the readings in March not being taken.

    Suggestion: They should make the effort to keep the intervals between readings constant.

    b) The designers could have designed the graph more accurately as when the size of the rubbish bin decreases, people think it has decreased a lot, but it hasn't. (Refer to Q1.)

    Suggestion: Redesign the graph so that it is also visually correct.


  21. Yang Teng Group1:

    1. No. Over 3 years, there is only o.3% decrease in reported non-collections. Although the number may be huge but it is less than 1% and is over a long period of 3 years.

    2. Firstly, the line cuts across the blue garbage bin. Visually, it is not accurate and you cannot see the y axis. The blue garbage bin are equally spaced but the months are not of the same months difference. From Feb '00 to June '00 there are 4 months but from Jun '00 to Nov '00 there are more than 4 months. Improvements for the bin can be either making it transparent, making it lower than the line or change the diagram from a dustbin to something else. For the months, it can be of equal month spacing consistently for example 4 months.

  22. no as there is only a very slight difference. the trash bin design is misleading and the graph makes little differences seem huge
    group 2

  23. Kenneth Mah (Group 3)
    1) The difference is not really significant. It is only a small difference of a few percent. Made to look bigger than it actually is.
    2) The months of the recording should be the same. Also, the graphical representations should not be the same but only up-sized. They should be a few of the same icons, each representing a certain amount of rubbish, like a pictogram.