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I wanted to see if anyone has used motion charts for project management or project reviews over time or for any general application portfolio management? I see gensight solution seems to give you a few motion charts to try to highlight project risks or strategy alignment

Which ones do you use for general application portfolio or project management? Are these more beneficial than non-motion charts?

  • Hi, ooo. Thank you for participating in our Q&A site. Good questions are those that ask about a real problem that you are facing. Good questions also have real answers. In this case, it's not really clear what the problem is here that you're facing, and this question could be closed as not a real question. I'm happy to leave this open for the time being and let the community intervene; however, I encourage you to provide more detail in your questions, which will also have the added benefit of getting you the best answers to your specific question. – jmort253 May 1 '11 at 20:29
  • @jmort253 - thanks for your comments. i added an example of a company that uses motion charts as part of their tools. I wanted to see if anyone in the industry actually uses this stuff and if they find it useful for project / program mgmt. I think this is on topic. I agree I don't have a specific problem so its a bit of a general question but given the scope of the sight i would argue that understanding general use of tools for this practice is in scope. – leora May 1 '11 at 21:16
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    It's definitely on-topic in that it's about project management, but I still feel it would be a better example of a Stack Exchange question if it included the specific problem that you are trying to solve. However, even as it stands, I can still see how the answers could have value. Thanks for helping to improve this question, I think it's a lot better now, even with the 'specific problem' issue; however, if you can add more about the problem you're trying to solve, I think that would make this a great question and not just an okay or good question. – jmort253 May 1 '11 at 21:21
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    Agreed, though I do see the value of this question; it could essentially be rewritten as how can motion charts be applied as a project management tool? – ashes999 May 1 '11 at 22:37
  • Motion charts can be useful for showing risk outcomes, however the problem with motion charts is that sometimes they are not tied to concrete numbers, and they can easily influence. Not that there are no numbers behind the chart, however they often "whiz by" and do need supporting data tables to support the presentation. – Ralph Winters May 4 '11 at 17:58
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Any method you choose, whether it is verbal, text, table, picture, or any type of graph, needs to be aligned and consistent with the message you are conveying, and needs to be easily decoded by the intended recipients. For the first part, you would not use a scatter diagram to show a trend across time. You could use a table with data but a line graph would be easier and faster to interpret and one could easily highlight the ebbs and flows better. For motion chart, I can see its value in PM if there was something in the motion that was part of the message or that I could make that message more compelling by the motion.

But whatever one chooses to convey a message, less is more and simple wins. Remember, the rule of thumb is you need to tell someone something between five and seven times for the recipient to remember you said it once.

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This sounds like a solution looking for a problem, so if you have to ask the question, perhaps you are wanting to use these charts just because you can. This Blog offers some useful views on when and how to use them.

I could perhaps see a valid use in showing how different teams have performed over time and in comparison to each other, as part of a live presentation. In reality, however, I can't think of many situations where the audience wouldn't expect a hard copy to take away and study the comparative data - which is not possible with motion charts. Perhaps you could use the motion chart during the presentation, and have the underpinning data available for handouts...?

Ultimately, anything that helps to convey a message in a clear, readily understood manner has a value. If you have a good reason to use motion charts, and you believe they will make a memorable impact (perhaps because of their relative novelty), then try them out on a critical friend, then decide whether they will work for you.

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