One category of blip that seems to be frequenting my radar lately has to do with a certain kind of information design. This subcategory seems like it deserves a better name than "information design," in that it serves to take great heaps of shapeless data and make something beautiful and interesting out of it. On second thought, maybe that's what all of information design is meant to do. Maybe it all deserves a less boring name. In any case, in this sub genre I'm talking about, the purpose is not to, say, take weather data and make cool charts out of it, or creatively show people how they could be saving more on their taxes with a color-coded deductions table — it's to take a whole category of information that you never would have thought to look at, and creatively squeeze it through a series of algorithms, filters, and visualization subroutines until it becomes something really thought-provoking.
Really great infographics are a sharp weapon that can be used for good or for evil. The same set of raw numbers on Civil War battles, for example, could be presented in two totally different ways, one of which would make you believe you've been flying the wrong flag all this time. Or in even more insidious, subtle (and therefore dangerous) cases, the data could be tipped just slightly, the range of an axis narrowed imperceptibly in a way that doesn't stand out, but makes you question whether global warming really IS that big of a deal, or whether we SHOULD be keeping those drug dealers in jail longer than the murderers.
What I like about these examples is that their creators are clearly aware of the power at their fingertips as information designers, but they are making a choice to subvert that power by abstracting the whole science into a form of self-expression. The data sampled doesn't necessarily say anything by itself, but the way it has been meticulously mined and re-formed says something sort of fascinating about those who cataloged it.