Whiteboard Data Viz: Manic Mileage

Whiteboard Data Viz: Manic Mileage

It was not long ago that our travel was so uncomplicated. A single day often consisted of a ride to work and back, maybe interrupted by a quick errand on the way. These days are no more. Between school, work, errands, extra curricular activities and the like, we spend a TON more time in the car than we would like. After tracking mileage for a week, we drove a total of 366 miles (wince). Those of you with more than a 5 minute commute to work may be laughing a little at our whining- but it is all relative, right?

To illustrate our extensive mileage, we drew a continuous line that indicates how many miles we drove in each car on each day of the week (mon-fri). The image below gives you a sense of how we managed to draw this with any kind of accurate scale (that’s an old shoe lace). The color of the line indicates the vehicle; mazda vs. subaru. The type of line indicates the day of the week.


Although Dan likes to think he drives a lot, it became pretty clear who spends more time in the car…the Subaru is Lynsey’s ride. However, it was interesting to learn that we drive relatively the same number of miles each day collectively, and that as one of us drives more the other drives less.



Spending so much time in the car this year has led us to discover several things we love:

  • PODCASTS and their amazing efficiency. Check out our favorites here.
  • Travel mugs. We have quite the collection going, and there’s often a fight over our favorites in the morning. We received this one at our 1 Million Cups talk.
  • Car diffuser. If you’re into essential oils or just nice smells, you’re gonna want one of these bad boys. It makes it super easy to ignore the funk that comes with breakfast, snacks, kids and dogs in the car.
  • Lastly, we recently discovered a SUPER cool Delaware start up called CARVERTISE. Not only is this a genius community marketing concept, but it’s local. And we’re all about that. If you have a long commute and put the miles in daily, Carvertise is something to consider. AND if you’re a small biz, it’s a smartly effective means of advertising. Check them out!

Carveritse is an advertising company that pays everyday drivers to place removable advertisements on their cars.

Do you have a go-to strategy to keep the commuting blues away? How do you reduce your car time? How do you entertain the kids and/or yourself while on the road?


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