In just a few hours, the 2016 Summer Olympic Games will officially begin. Although some events have been underway since yesterday, the inaugural ceremony at the Maracanã stadium marks the opening of the Rio de Janeiro’s Games. Amidst controversies, political instability and some fears (ranging from mosquito bites to terrorist attacks), this edition of the Olympics is, above all, an edition of records: number of countries, number of sports – and the first to be held entirely during the host country’s winter season.
More than 11 thousand athletes will be showcasing their skills in 28 Olympic sports — including rugby sevens and golf, which were added by the International Olympic Committee in 2009. These sporting events are distributed throughout 33 venues in Rio and 5 venues in São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, Salvador, Brasília and Manaus.
We sincerely hope that this event becomes a memorable celebration of the values of sports, in a moment when so many tragic things have been happening around the world. And similarly to what we did in the 2012 London Olympics, we are sharing in this post a first round up of interactive graphics, visualizations, multimedia specials and long-form narratives about Rio 2016. They cover pretty much all the afore mentioned aspects of the event, and were developed not only by some of the main newsrooms in the world, but also by other organizations, specially humanitarian ones, trying to bring to light the many problems Rio’s citizens face in their daily lives.
Let’s start with the picks from the host country, where the popular sports website Globoesporte.com (and a regular presence in the lists of Malofiej winners in the online categories) was particularly prolific. Brazil’s major newspapers, Folha de São Paulo, O Globo and Estado de São Paulo also put together interesting features, although perhaps not as many as one would expect, when you look at the uniqueness of the moment.
The technology in the Rio 2016 Olympics | Galileu
The Olympic torches | O Globo
Crossfire: Shootings in Rio de Janeiro | Amnesty International
OBSERVATÓR!O2016 | VISGRAF Lab/IMPA
Guanabara Bay | Globoesporte.com
Olympic Medals World Map | Globoesporte.com
My Olympic Podium | Globoesporte.com
Olympic sports – animation video series | Globoesporte.com
The weight of the Gold Medal in football | Globoesporte.com
Biotype of the Olympic Athletes | Globoesporte.com
Mindset of a Champion | Globoesporte.com
Olympic mascots | Globoesporte.com
Rio 2016’s Olympic Torch | Globoesporte.com
How to get to the Olympic venues | G1
Rio 2016: The Olympic legacy | Estado de S. Paulo
Rio 2016: Guide for the Olympic tourist | Estado de S. Paulo
The 4G challenge in Rio 2016 | Estado de S. Paulo
My Olympic moment (series) | Folha de S. Paulo
What Sport is this? (series) | Folha de S. Paulo
The Rio 2016 Olympic medals | Folha de S. Paulo
Inside the Games | CidadeOlimpica.rio
Most major news websites are covering the Olympics, so you won’t have any trouble finding calendars and overviews of the venues, the athletes and so on. We open this section with a mention to the official website of the 2016 Olympic Games, and then move on to explore some of the work already published by outlets such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian and The Wall Street Journal, alongside some independent projects as well.
Rio 2016 Official website
Rio – Beyond the Map | Google Artys & Culture
Visualizing Rio 2016 | The Washington Post
The Olympics issue | The New York Times Magazine
Who’s polluting Rio’s Bay | The New York Times Magazine
Olympic bodies | The Wall Street Journal
100 Olympians to watch at Rio 2016 | The Guardian
How evictions have laid bare Rio’s real Olympic legacy | The Guardian
Great Sporting Moments in Olympic History | BBC
Do you have the mentality of an Olympian? | BBC
Ready or Not, Let the Games Begin | Esri
The Summer Olympics: What It Takes, Who’s on Top and Who’s Competing | NBC
We also picked a couple of data visualizations created with Tableau Public, among the great examples featured in the Viz of the Day gallery.
Olympic Games Candidates | Jade Le Van
History of the Summer Olympics | Alexandria Duke
Michael Phelps – King of the Pool | Rody Zakovich
Featuring graphics from the French data visualization powerhouse publication, Le Monde, and from Spain’s main sports newspaper, Marca. Here too we thought the number of compelling projects drop quite a bit, comparing with the previous edition. But again, with so many breaking news stories in recent months, plus the financial crisis in the news industry that led to so many layoffs, it’s really hard to ask for more from graphics desks – specially when the editorial decision isn’t theirs.
5000 events in 120 years of Olympic Games | Le Monde
10 information that you haven’t (yet) on the French delegation | Le Monde
From Rio to Athens: 120 years of Olympic Games | ShopAlike
Olympic sports visual encyclopedia | Marca
As usual, this is not supposed to be an ‘ultimate selection’, and we always like to think that we left out some amazing works. It’s quite natural that we make a follow-up post, after the Games, so feel free to drop us your suggestions on Twitter or the comment box below.