Words, Time and Tea


In short: The progress of the writing of “Big Data: Does Size Matter?” by Timandra Harkness in Words, Time and Tea. A standard WTT plot!

Description: A light-hearted  look at the life of an author. As the blocks are added the piece of work is created, usually judged in either time or satisfactory completion – depending on whether you are an author or publisher. In this image the vertical stacking is a scale of time, whereas the width of each added block is the increase in word-count, allowing gaps to emphasize the review process. The depth of color shows the cups-of-tea per hour. Though not strictly an accurate representation of quantity, the color palette is taken from images of tea of different strengths. No data existed regarding how strong the tea was made (though it is suspected a pot was used), if sugar was used, or whether milk was added.

Point of interest:  A key feature of this data is the effect the introduction of a tea trolley has on tea consumption. For a true comparison of how this translates into productivity, two very similar books would need to be written  – one with and without a tea-trolley.

Technical: Word-count and cups-of-tea data collected by Timandra Harkness during the writing of her fantastic book “Big Data: Does Size Matter?”  – available at all good bookstores. The dimensions of each block relates to the word-count increase (width) and time spent (height). The depth of color of each block refers to the tea-per-hour rate [SI unit: TPH; Derived unit: m^3/s]. Where gaps exist is where time was spent without an increase in word-count. All scales are linear.


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