Google Sheets: Unemployment Net Change

Graphic: Unemployment Net Change

Interactive Chart

The graphic above displays unemployment net changes for national employees. The data in the graphic is from the years 2005 to 2015.Each rise and fall in the line graph represents the number of employees who were unemployed for that year.

Source:Bureau of Labor Statistics


Google My Maps: Salary Necessary For US Housing

Salary Necessary For US Housing

This map details the average price to purchase/own a home for various states in the USA. The map highlights a few states that offer buying prices from low, medium, to high range (Arizona, Washington, California). Based on the maps data it appears that the most affordable state to purchase a home in is Phoenix, Arizona. While the most expensive state to purchase a home in is San Francisco, California. The remainder of the map details buying prices for a multitude of other states in the US, creating a cohesive visual of the US housing market.

Chicago Pride Parade Attendance

Graphic: Chicago Pride Parade Attendance
Graphic: Chicago Pride Parade Attendance

Graphic: Chicago Pride Parade Attendance

Every year at the Chicago Pride Parade thousands of people from all demographics gather in celebration of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) rights. The celebration is one of Chicago’s largest and most well attended events. The two day festival takes place during the end of June when the weather is hot and   chicagoans seek fun havens. The best part about the pride parade is that attendance is free for all and open to those of all ages.

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Google Trends: Snapchat vs. Instagram and Vlogging vs. Blogging


Searches for Snapchat vs. Instagram

With the increase of social media networks comes preference for one network over the other. I wanted to see just how many Americans prefer Snapchat over Instagram or vice versa so I searched and compared the two networks. Turns out that in the past twelve months Americans prefer to use Instagram over Snapchat despite the growing popularity of the Snapchat platform. Nevertheless, the Instagram platform closely resembles the Snapchat platform. Both sites allow users to upload photos and videos of themselves and/or others in a manner that is both easy and convenient. Additionally,  both sites allow users to upload short temporary videos or photos that are live for twenty-four hours before the content completely disappears for good. Users have the ability to save these videos/photos before they post them live to their “stories”,  giving only the user later access to that content. There are some key distinctions between the sites as well. With Instagram, users are able to upload photos/videos with the capablility of a constant stream of content for viewing by friends or the public that remains present. With Snapchat, users content is never permanent, content shared with friends or the public will only last for twenty-four hours. Unlike Instagram, Snapchat does not offer a history of uploaded content for the views of friends/public. If the friends of  Snapchat users don’t see the users posts within twenty-four hours, there is no content for them to view until the user uploads again.Comparing these two networks brings new awareness to why people may prefer Instagram to Snapchat, with Instagram being a more diverse social site.

Vlogging vs. Blogging

Who knew the day would come where people actually uploaded videos of their lives for others to view on the internet. Well that day is here thanks to vlogging; but I wondered just how interested Americans are in the activity. I searched and compared vlogging to blogging among Americans in the last twelve months. Turns out Americans prefer blogging much more then they do vlogging. This seems to make sense due to the fact that blogging has been around much longer than new age vlogging. But it does seem that vlogging has made or is making an impression to some through sites like YouTube,Reddit, and personal/professional websites. According to the internet, vlogging is defined as the activity of recording short videos of ones personal day to day activities for the viewing pleasure of those interested among the general public. Today it seems that more and more everyday Americans are pulling out their cameras and showcasing their weekly routines or taking their “followers” along as they run errands in the grocery store, or redecorate their homes, or even get their kids ready for bed. For some, watching videos about the lives of others is unheard of, but to others it’s a form of entertainment or even a bonding experience. Blogging on the other hand is a much less direct way of sharing ones personal life or perspectives that many more people are familiar and comfortable with. It stems from simple and notable skills, that is typing up information for others to read, form an opinion about, and comment on. The Blogger then chooses how often to write in their blog in addition to when to write in the blog. The blogger may even choose to form relationships with his/her readers if he/she is inspired to. Again, levels of discretion are total up to the blogger. Since writing is and always has been a preferred method of reaching people and sharing opinions in our worldly culture; it is definitely easy to see how the majority of Americans would opt for a blog over a vlog.

Practice post



Pat Quinn photo
Gov. Pat Quinn talks about MAP grants at DePaul University. (Photo by Josclynn Brandon)


Editor’s note: This story was originally posted on Dec. 12, 2012 and is housed at

By Bob Smith


Gov. Pat Quinn visited DePaul University’s Loop campus on Wednesday to discuss how pension reform is harming the Monetary Award Program (MAP) college scholarships and access to higher education in Illinois.


“This is so important to our state, not only in the past, but certainly now and in the future,” Quinn said.
“We want everyone to have the opportunity to go to college that has the ability to go to college.”


MAP grants are need-based college scholarships that allow merit students who are in need across the state and do not need to be repaid by the student. Quinn said that due to cutbacks and having to pay more money in the pension amount, almost 18,000 students lost their MAP grant scholarships this year.
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