This morning, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) unveiled MyPlate, replacing the traditional food pyramid. The new design uses a graphic resembling a dinner plate with a smaller circle nearby representing dairy. Clicking on a food group leads to a page with a detailed list of foods belonging to the group as well as nutrition tips and suggestions. The nutritionists behind the new graphic especially want to emphasize the fact that fruits and vegetables cover half of the plate.
My initial impression is that MyPlate, like its predecessor, still suffers from clarity issues. One of the first concepts taught in statistical visualization courses is that areas are harder for humans to compare than lengths, especially when no numbers or data is accompanying the visual. MyPlate is already missing percentages of total from its food groups, and the fact that the dairy circle is separate from the main plate only complicates matters.
What are your thoughts on MyPlate?