Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Blood work of art

For me, the hardest part of a blood test isn't the test itself. Nor is it the overnight fast, the rush-hour crawl to the lab, or even the inevitable delay in the lab's waiting room.

The hardest part -- by far -- is making sense of the results. The medical jargon, the acronyms, the abstract numerical values ... And to make matters worse, they always seem to be printed on a mid-80s dot matrix printer in desperate need of a new ribbon.

It seems that the editors of Wired feel the same way, because this month's issue features an 8-page spread in which common lab reports are re-imagined by professional designers. Wired addresses three reports, evaluates the information design of each, and suggests a solution that's much easier to make sense of.

An example is below (original lab work on left, redesign on right).  Check out Wired for the full article online.

Click to embiggen.

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