Impact / Data Visualization | Life Histories in GGP

We ask people about their relationships, their families and their children and this data together provides hundred’s of thousands of life stories. Taken together these stories weave a patchwork in which we look for patterns and try to understand how these patterns are changing over time and what might be causing them. In this visualization you can watch the lives of 500 people unfold.  Each dot in the animation represents one real person that the GGP interviewed in the country you select from the drop down menu.

At the Age of 15 pretty much everybody is single and doesn’t have any children so they start down in the bottom left hand corner. Then as time passes some find a partner to live with and some even get married. When they do, the little dot that represents them moves up to represent this change in their relationship status. As time passes some people also have children, and to represent this the dot moves to the right for every additional child they have. 

The dots in the visualization are two different colours to represent two groups of people. The green dots are people who were born in 1950. They would have been 17 during the ‘summer of love’ and 35 years old during the ‘Live Aid’ concert in 1985. They are commonly called ‘baby boomers’. The orange dots are people who were born in 1970. They were 19 when the Berlin Wall fell and 30 at the turn of the Millennium. They are generally referred to as ‘Generation X’. These two generations have lived quite different lives, as the visualization shows.

Click ‘Start’ to begin the animation. You can change the country by selecting another one from the drop down list, clicking ‘Update’ and then clicking ‘Start’ again.

The animation uses d3.js, or Data-Driven Documents, created by Mike Bostock. The animation is inspired by the following post of Nathan Yau: and developed by Eugenio Paglino & Tom Emery.



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