Macroeconomics is a subject extremely well suited to conceptual visualization, yet the majority of the educational material on the web seems to be text-centered (other than supply-demand curves and the occasional simple diagram or balance sheet). While equations such as “GDP = C + I + G + ( X – M )” provide precision and rigor and aren't even mathematically complex, their inclusion in content (for example, blog posts) necessarily narrows the potential audience.
As most readers know, my first attempt at concept visualization for macroeconomics was the Macroeconomic Balance Sheet Visualizer. However, it did not appear to be as accessible to newcomers as I'd initially hoped. So I've been working on something intended for a broader audience.
Design goals include:
- Anchor as much of the verbal content to visual representations as possible, to reduce ambiguity and help illustrate concepts
- Be as concise as possible while covering the most important core concepts
- Have the core content be beginner friendly, but have additional details available just a click away at each step along the path for those who want more
- Use a web site rather than blog format, so the content can be evolved and improved in-place over time
My “to do” list is enormous for it... there is much much more that can be done graphically as well with better verbal coverage of concepts. It simply takes time... And you'll also have to excuse the amateurish graphics, for now.
That said, it's very useful to get feedback to help prioritize the “to do” list, plus you may have creative suggestions that aren't on my list! Also I hope you'll help keep me on track with direct and honest feedback (including negative reactions) if you think parts of it are heading in the wrong direction, or I've messed up or left out important things! If you do choose to try this new visualizer and respond, you can give anonymous feedback directly from a link at the bottom of each page in the tutorial, or you can post comments to this blog post, or email me.
And if you're just learning MMT and are short on time, you may want to just wait for a future improved version rather go through what's there now, since it's full of gaps and placeholders.
Here it is:
P.S. I do still have a good sized list of potential topics for this blog too, but have still been giving the EconViz stuff priority for the time being, so please excuse the silence.