Different Approaches to Portraying the United States in Data Visualizations

Sorry I'm kind of a NYTimes fangirl but I stumbled across both of these on social media this morning. I know we were talking a lot about our visualizations last week and how to play around with the shape of the United States when portraying data.  I thought these were two interesting examples.

The first is a look at how gay marriage has expanded state by state.  Here, the states are squares roughly in the shape of the U.S.  The color corresponds to some point in the evolution of gay marriage rights.  Check out that graphic here.

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The second is just an illustration, but it is as if the United States is made up of emojis.  Kind of an interesting look at the 50 states of emoticons.  You can check the column that goes with it here.

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