Just as the GoPro camera and YouTube have enabled us regular viewers to see things from a perspective we've never seen before, aerial photography, satellite imagery, number-crunching computers and GPS trackers can help us understand data flows too complicated to easily imagine.
The fantastic PBS miniseries America Revealed, which "explores the hidden patterns and rhythms that make America work," makes stunning use of data-viz techniques to stimulate the eye-candy part of your brain while teaching you something. Pictured up top is what our internet access looks like (image rotated to fit). Below is "the route of a family-run combine harvesting business as they zig zag across the U.S."
These pinpricks of light represent U.S. job losses (rotated to fit).
Most fascinating to me are these blue lines showing the Manhattan travel routes of a pizza delivery guy, taken from the episode looking at how food moves across the country.
This wicked image shows Domino's Pizza's national supply chain.
Here's the trailer for the Food episode, which I'll say is your must-see video of the week:
The full episode is available for free viewing online, at least for U.S. residents, here. (UK readers, you should be able to catch the program through Sky. Everyone else outside the U.S., hit the link and let us know in the comments if the player is allowed in your country.)