Random Asides

BCT: A Boring Boring Chart

This week’s post is a brief and uneventful break from all the digital BS we wade through every day lately. It comes from the Upside Down a published source, a magazine for structural engineers, who apparently read with mirrors while standing on their head. Behold, the Boring Spacing Trends chart!

Boring Spacing Trends
Image from Structure

At first glance, the years being at the top instead of the bottom seems odd, but that doesn’t really change the meaning or readability of the chart. The other axis is actually the problem. The numbers get larger going down instead of vice versa, making the overall trend seem to be moving steadily downward when the opposite is the case: boring spacing has increased over time.

That this easily misunderstood chart is part of a “Common Misunderstandings” article is unfortunately ironic, yet even that can’t save the chart from living up to its name: boring.

Melanie Mallon

Melanie is a freelance editor and writer living in a small town outside Minneapolis with her husband, two kids, dog, and two cats. When not making fun of bad charts or running the Uncensorship Project, she spends her time wrangling commas, making colon jokes, and putting out random dumpster fires. You can find her on Twitter as @MelMall, on Facebook, and on Instagram.

Related Articles


    1. You wake up in the hospital, heavily sedated but in serious pain. “What happened?” you ask. “We have good news and bad news” says the doctor. “You’ve been shot four times, once in the head, twice in the chest and in the shoulder. The good news is the shoulder wound was a clean through-and-through and we’ve mostly stopped the bleeding.”

Leave a Reply to jrkrideauCancel reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button