Below is the greatest infographic of all time. You have probably seen it before, but true classics are worth repeating for new audiences, or just to remind the rest of us of what is good.
The infographic conveys statistical details about a historic French fighting force. It has been studied, copied, and parodied thousands of times.
No, it's not Minard's map of how Napoleon's men froze to death in Russia, although that one's pretty good too.
Shepard Fairey's Andre the Giant has a Posse.
Infographics have two purposes:
1. Communicate some information.
2. Be memorable.
No one who has seen this infographic could possibly forget that Andre the Giant had a posse. No one could forget his menacing, yet calm face rendered in grainy black and white. Anyone who forgot the statistical data listed in the upper right corner could refer back to the image, but no one could forget the gist: Andre the Giant was enormous.
I'm not suggesting that this is the greatest information visualization, or data visualization, of all time. But as infographics go, it is the brute squad.