Posts Tagged ‘sparklines’

Microsoft to patent Tufte’s sparklines?! (Kottke)

Friday, November 20th, 2009


[Editor’s note: This is total bullsh*t, the US Patent office should not be granting Microsoft patents for basic concepts that are already out in the market place as prior art and in fact invented / popularized by someone else, namely Edward Tufte. Shame on Microsoft and boo on lazy patent clerks! Thanks Melissa.]

Republished from Kottke and Tufte.

In an absurd twist, on their own Microsof blog, Tufte is credited as inventor:

For Excel 2010 we’ve implemented sparklines, “intense, simple, word-sized graphics”, as their inventor Edward Tufte describes them in his book Beautiful Evidence.

Another way to read their patent application is regarding not just placement of a sparkline in an Excel spreadsheet but any digital document. Also a bizarre claim since other tools already do that as add ins, and you can even hack this work now in Google Docs with the charting API.

Someone should start a free the sparkline petition 😉

Creating Sparklines with the Google Charts API

Monday, January 7th, 2008

sparkline little thumb’s Jonathan Corum’s has another informative entry on creating Edward Tufte style “sparklines” using the free Google Charts API. Sparklines are “little data lines” that show “active quality over time … small, high-resolution graphics embeeded in a context of words, numbers, images. Sparklines are data-intense, design simple, word-sized graphics” (Tufte).