In early May I decided to learn more about one of the popular infographic tools available on the web because infographics can deliver complex information simply and concisely. This makes them useful for communications professionals delivering key messages in environments where competing demands on audience attention limit the time available to digest information.
Infogr.am was a fairly simple tool to use and it delivers bright, clear graphics. I used the free tool which provides a useful suite of basic options, but more functionality can be unlocked through its subscription service.
I based my infographic on the performance of Barclays Premier League (BPL) goal scorers because, in my spare time, I like to play Fantasy Premier League (FPL). I am particularly drawn to the statistical analysis side of the game and I like diving into the data to get a better understanding of the past, present and potential future returns a player is likely to generate for a team.
The viewer can see at a glance:
whether the top six scorers netted consistently throughout the season or in patches;
how just six players accounted for almost an eighth of all BPL goals by May 1;
that Giroud scored as many as Sanchez but in far less pitch time;
and that Agüero, Kane and Sánchez are more likely to score multiple goals in one match than Costa, Austin and Giroud.
An audience of experienced FPL players can use that information to adjust their player picks to deliver greater returns.
Congratulations to the USA on winning a wonderful Women’s World Cup. I’ve seen six games and some outstanding play in the 2015 tournament, including a couple of cracking goals in the final. To have been in Vancouver’s stadium with more than 53,000 other spectators on three occasions – less than 25 years after my sister had to campaign to be allowed to play football at school – was a great experience.
The USA celebrates winning the Women’s World Cup 2015
Running a marathon requires strength of will. Running 26.2 miles is not easy. Despite weeks of training covering hundreds of kilometres, the average runner will probably be suffering in the last quarter of the race. Your body might be telling you there is nothing left, it may be screaming in pain, but your brain keeps you going. Your mind tells you to just keep putting one foot in front of another and, step by step, you make it to the finish line. Marathon runners have the will power to push on through to the end.
The contrast between them, their supporters and the coward or cowards who carried out today’s heinous attack cannot be starker. The runners have strived to achieve, their supporters backed them all the way. The cowards, on the other hand, wished only to destroy to try to provoke fear.
But I am sure they could not have picked on a more inappropriate group of people to attempt to cow. Marathon runners know how to overcome and carry on. Their supporters know how much it means to reach the finish line.
The nature of a marathon and the way it winds its way through kilometre after kilometre of crowd-thronged streets means preventing a bomb attack is almost impossible. Next week, another huge marathon takes place in London. The organisers have said they expect it to go ahead. Next month, a marathon will take place in Vancouver. Barring serious injury, I will be there on the start line. I will think of the runners in Boston and their supporters, but I will not be cowed. The terrorists have killed and they have maimed, but they will not win.
I have just finished watching the most farcical game of American football I can remember in 20 years of watching the sport. The result will make waves in the NFL but also serves as a reminder for other sports that technology can only help, not replace, well trained officials.
For those that did not see the match up between the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks, the game ended with Seattle throwing a ‘Hail Mary’ pass into the end zone in the hope of getting the touchdown they needed to win the game. Here is how the ball came down (Green Bay in white shirts and yellow helmets):
I wrote the other day about how I was inspired by Bradley Wiggins’s ambition to succeed. It would be remiss of me to let today pass without praising him for fulfilling his ambitions. Today he added Olympic gold in the London 2012 cycling road race to his Tour de France win in Paris last week. Not only did he win, but he won in style by completing the course 42 seconds faster than his nearest rival, Germany’s world champion Tony Martin.
Wiggins fully deserves all the plaudits and any accolades that come his way for his performances this year. His latest gold made him Britain’s most decorated Olympic medalist, with four golds, a silver and two bronze medals from four games. However, like a true champion, he is still not satisfied. I think it says it all that after today’s race one of his first public comments was to say:
“What’s the point of seven medals if they’re not the right colour? The main number is that is gold number four. So I have got to carry on to Rio now and make it five.”
He will be 36 when the Olympics comes to Brazil in 2016, but with ambition like that anything is possible.
In a few hours Bradley Wiggins is set to roll down the Champs-Élysée to complete his dream of winning the world’s most famous cycling race. His Tour de France ride has been a triumph of ambition that I find inspiring. Continue reading →
I wanted to get some action shots the other night, so I headed down to the beach front which is usually a hive of activity. The lads in the pictures below were kind enough to do a few tricks on their bikes for me – so it is only fair I show the world what they can do!
As I write this a friend of mine is just a few hours away from taking part in the final of the Open Masters at the World Ultimate Championships in Japan. Mark and I used to play on the same team on the UK Mixed Tour about a decade ago. Continue reading →