Author: Marcus Lu

Every Song With Over 1 Billion Spotify Streams


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


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artists with more than one billion streams on spotify

Every Song With Over 1 Billion Spotify Streams

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Spotify has a relatively short history, launching in Europe in 2008, and eventually moving into the U.S. market in 2011. Since then, the Stockholm-based company has become the world’s most popular audio streaming service with 456 million users across 183 markets.

With such a large userbase, major artists on Spotify have seen their biggest hits accumulate millions, if not billions of streams. So, in July 2021, Spotify created the Billions Club, a playlist comprising every song to reach the 1 billion milestone.

We at Visual Capitalist saw this as an opportunity to create a unique data visualization, so we compiled the entire playlist and arranged it by decade and artist.

The Top 10 Artists

Below are the top 10 artists, ranked by their number of songs with over 1 billion streams. The list actually includes 11 artists because Shawn Mendes, Bruno Mars, and Coldplay are tied with 5 songs in the Billions Club.

RankArtistArtist's Monthly ListensSongs With 1 Billion+ Streams
1Ed Sheeran76M11
2Post Malone51M9
2The Weeknd79M9
4XXXTENTACION34M8
5Ariana Grande56M7
5Maroon 550M7
7Drake68M6
7Eminem59M6
9Shawn Mendes43M5
9Bruno Mars51M5
9Coldplay59M5

Sorting this list in different ways can reveal (Read more...)

Visualizing the World’s Largest Hydroelectric Dams


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


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largest hydroelectric dams

Visualizing the World’s Largest Hydroelectric Dams

This was originally posted on Elements. Sign up to the free mailing list to get beautiful visualizations on natural resource megatrends in your email every week.

Did you know that hydroelectricity is the world’s biggest source of renewable energy? According to recent figures from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), it represents 40% of total capacity, ahead of solar (28%) and wind (27%).

This type of energy is generated by hydroelectric power stations, which are essentially large dams that use the water flow to spin a turbine. They can also serve secondary functions such as flow monitoring and flood control.

To help you learn more about hydropower, we’ve visualized the five largest hydroelectric dams in the world, ranked by their maximum output.

Overview of the Data

The following table lists key information about the five dams shown in this graphic, as of 2021. Installed capacity is the maximum amount of power that a plant can generate under full load.

CountryDamRiverInstalled Capacity
(gigawatts)
Dimensions
(meters)
🇨🇳 ChinaThree Gorges DamYangtze River22.5181 x 2,335
🇧🇷 Brazil / 🇵🇾 ParaguayItaipu DamParana River14.0196 x 7,919
🇨🇳 ChinaXiluodu DamJinsha River13.9286 x 700
🇧🇷 BrazilBelo Monte DamXingu River11.290 X 3,545
🇻🇪 VenezuelaGuri DamCaroni River10.2162 x 7,426

At the top of the list is China’s Three Gorges Dam, which opened in 2003. (Read more...)

Visualized: The Biggest Donors of the 2022 U.S. Midterm Elections


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


largest donors of the U.S. midterm elections

Visualized: The Biggest Donors of the 2022 U.S. Midterm Elections

This year’s midterm election is expected to set a new spending record, with over $9 billion being raised. This is significantly higher than the previous record of $7 billion, which was set in 2018.

According to a recent analysis by the Washington Post, $1 billion of these funds can be attributed to the top 50 donors. In typical Visual Capitalist style, we’ve illustrated this data to provide you with better insight.

Overview of the Data

The following table lists the top 10 individual donors of the 2022 midterm elections.

RankNameAffiliationTotal Donation (USD millions)
#1George SorosDemocrat$129
#2Elizabeth & Richard UihleinRepublican$70
#3Kenneth GriffinRepublican$66
#4Jeffrey YassRepublican$48
#5Sam Bankman-FriedDemocrat$39
#6Stephen SchwarzmanRepublican$33
#7Timothy MellonRepublican$33
#8Larry EllisonRepublican$31
#9Peter ThielRepublican$30
#10Patrick & Shirley RyanRepublican$27

Sorting this top 10 donor list by party, we can see that $168 million was raised for the Democrats, and $338 million for the Republicans.

Continue reading below for some interesting background info on all 10 of these individuals. Net worth values were gathered from Forbes on November 1, 2022.

George Soros (Net worth: $7B)

George Soros is a Hungarian-born American billionaire, widely known for his philanthropical efforts and for “breaking” the Bank of England. He has had an illustrious career as a hedge fund manager, founding Soros Fund (Read more...)

Visualized: The Biggest Donors of the 2022 U.S. Midterm Elections


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


largest donors of the U.S. midterm elections

Visualized: The Biggest Donors of the 2022 U.S. Midterm Elections

This year’s midterm election is expected to set a new spending record, with over $9 billion being raised. This is significantly higher than the previous record of $7 billion, which was set in 2018.

According to a recent analysis by the Washington Post, $1 billion of these funds can be attributed to the top 50 donors. In typical Visual Capitalist style, we’ve illustrated this data to provide you with better insight.

Overview of the Data

The following table lists the top 10 individual donors of the 2022 midterm elections.

RankNameAffiliationTotal Donation (USD millions)
#1George SorosDemocrat$129
#2Elizabeth & Richard UihleinRepublican$70
#3Kenneth GriffinRepublican$66
#4Jeffrey YassRepublican$48
#5Sam Bankman-FriedDemocrat$39
#6Stephen SchwarzmanRepublican$33
#7Timothy MellonRepublican$33
#8Larry EllisonRepublican$31
#9Peter ThielRepublican$30
#10Patrick & Shirley RyanRepublican$27

Sorting this top 10 donor list by party, we can see that $168 million was raised for the Democrats, and $338 million for the Republicans.

Continue reading below for some interesting background info on all 10 of these individuals. Net worth values were gathered from Forbes on November 1, 2022.

George Soros (Net worth: $7B)

George Soros is a Hungarian-born American billionaire, widely known for his philanthropical efforts and for “breaking” the Bank of England. He has had an illustrious career as a hedge fund manager, founding Soros Fund (Read more...)

Global Trade Series: Fragmentation in the Digital Economy


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


The following content is sponsored by The Hinrich Foundation
The Hinrich FoundationDownload The Report

Global Trade Series: Fragmentation in the Digital Economy

Since its creation, the internet has vastly expanded sociopolitical and economic development around the world. This is largely attributed to the its ability to facilitate communications, data sharing, and commerce on a truly global scale.

Unfortunately, a free and open internet will not always be guaranteed. Fragmentation between rival nations is growing, and it threatens to split the digital economy into silos.

In Part 3 of The Global Trade Series from the Hinrich Foundation, we examine the current state of digital fragmentation and its implications on the world.

The Physical Divide

Developed economies are entering a fourth industrial revolution, spawned entirely by digital technologies. This includes transformative innovations like artificial intelligence, blockchain, and 5G.

These technologies have the potential to improve income levels and quality of life, but they could also worsen global inequality. This is because of a major gap in internet-supportive infrastructure, as illustrated in the infographic.

To get a sense of this gap, consider the following numbers.

  • 86 countries have fewer than 300 secure servers per million people
  • The U.S. has over 110,000 secure servers per million people
  • Denmark, the Netherlands, and Singapore have an even higher ratio than the U.S.

Secure internet servers are the basis of protected communications on the internet. Without them, (Read more...)

Ranked: The World’s Most Surveilled Cities


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


Most surveilled cities

Ranked: The World’s Most Surveilled Cities

This may come as a surprise, but it wasn’t until 2007 that the global urban population overtook the rural population. At that time, the two groups were split nearly 50/50, with around 3.3 billion people apiece.

Today, the percentage of people living in urban areas has grown to over 55%, and is expected to reach 68% by 2050. Due to this trend, many of the world’s largest cities have become home to tens of millions of people.

In response to such incredible density, governments, businesses, and households have installed countless security cameras for various purposes including crime protection. To grasp the scale of this surveillance, we’ve taken data from a recent report by Comparitech to visualize the most surveilled cities in the world.

The List (Excluding China)

Excluding China for the time being, these are the world’s 10 most surveilled cities.

CityPopulationNumber of CamerasCameras per
1,000 people
🇮🇳 Indore, India3.2M200,60063
🇮🇳 Hyderabad, India10.5M440,29942
🇮🇳 Delhi, India16.3M436,60027
🇮🇳 Chennai, India11.5M282,12625
🇸🇬 Singapore6.0M108,98118
🇷🇺 Moscow, Russia12.6M213,00017
🇮🇶 Baghdad, Iraq7.5M120,00016
🇬🇧 London, UK9.5M127,37313
🇷🇺 St. Petersburg, Russia5.5M70,00013
🇺🇸 Los Angeles, U.S.3.9M34,9599

Figures rounded

The top four cities all belong to India, which is the world’s second largest country by population. Surveillance cameras are playing a major role in the country’s efforts to reduce crimes against women.

Further down the list are cities (Read more...)

Ranked: The Top Cyberattacks Against Businesses


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


The following content is sponsored by Global X ETFs.

Global X BUG ETF

Ranked: The Top Cyberattacks Against Businesses

Cyberattacks hit a record high in 2021, continuing the momentum that had developed during the COVID-19 pandemic. One reason for this increase is the shift to remote work, which has opened up new vulnerabilities. Home networks are typically less secure, and the rapid rise in the use of online services means security is falling behind.

In this graphic sponsored by Global X ETFs, we’ve visualized survey results showing the 10 most successful types of cyberattacks in 2021.

The Results

These results are from a 2021 whitepaper by Osterman Research, a market research firm focused on cybersecurity. They surveyed 130 cybersecurity professionals from mid and large-sized organizations to see which types of attacks were the most prominent.

Type of AttackPercentage of respondents (%)
Business email attack was successful in tricking a lower-level employee53%
Phishing message resulted in a malware infection49%
Phishing message resulted in an account being compromised47%
Domain name was spoofed to perpetrate phishing campaigns38%
Ransomware was detected before it could be activated34%
Business email attack was successful in tricking a senior executive28%
Domain name impersonation resulted in a third-party being compromised16%
Phishing message resulted in a ransomware infection14%
A ransomware attack was successfully launched10%
A ransomware attack rendered internal IT systems non-operational10%

Source: Osterman Research (2021)

The report notes that these figures may be understated because organizations are likely to (Read more...)

All Electric Semi Truck Models in One Graphic


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


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Every Electric Semi Truck in One Graphic

Every Electric Semi Truck in One Graphic

This was originally posted on Elements. Sign up to the free mailing list to get beautiful visualizations on natural resource megatrends in your email every week.

Electric semi trucks are coming, and they could help to decarbonize the shipping and logistics industry. However, range remains a major limitation.

This presents challenges for long-hauling, where the average diesel-powered semi can travel up to 2,000 miles before refueling. Compare this to the longest range electric model, the Tesla Semi, which promises up to 500 miles. A key word here is “promises”—the Semi is still in development, and nothing has been proven yet.

In this infographic, we’ve listed all of the upcoming electric semi trucks, complete with range and charge time estimates. Further in the article, we’ll explore the potential commercial use cases of this first generation of trucks.

Model Overview

The following table includes all of the models included in the above infographic.

CompanyTruck NameRangeCharge Time Expected Delivery
🇺🇸 TeslaSemi300-500 milesTBD2023
🇺🇸 FreightlinereCascadia250 miles80% in as low as 1.5 hrs2022
🇸🇪 VolvoVNR Electric275 miles80% in as low as 1 hr2022
🇺🇸 KenworthT680E150 miles100% in as low as 3.3 hrsTBD
🇺🇸 Peterbilt579EV150 miles100% in as low as 3.3 hrs2022
🇨🇳 BYD8TT167 miles100% in as low as 2.5 hrsIn operation
🇺🇸 NikolaTre BEV (Read more...)

Visualized: The State of Central Bank Digital Currencies


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


central bank digital currencies

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Visualized: The State of Central Bank Digital Currencies

Central banks around the world are getting involved in digital currencies, but some are further ahead than others.

In this map, we used data from the Atlantic Council’s Currency Tracker to visualize the state of each central banks’ digital currency effort.

Digital Currency – The Basics

Digital currencies have been around since the 1980s, but didn’t become widely popular until the launch of Bitcoin in 2009. Today, there are thousands of digital currencies in existence, also referred to as “cryptocurrencies”.

A defining feature of cryptocurrencies is that they are based on a blockchain ledger. Blockchains can be either decentralized or centralized, but the most known cryptocurrencies today (Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc.) tend to be decentralized in nature. This makes transfers and payments very difficult to trace because there is no single entity with full control.

Government-issued digital currencies, on the other hand, will be controlled by a central bank and are likely to be easily trackable. They would have the same value as the local cash currency, but (Read more...)

The Biggest Corporate Hacks of 2021


This post is by Marcus Lu from Visual Capitalist


The following content is sponsored by Global X ETFs.

Global X BUG ETF

The Biggest Corporate Hacks of 2021

Businesses are a prime target for cybercriminals, regardless of their size, industry, or location.

In this graphic sponsored by Global X ETFs, we’ve visualized the largest corporate hacks of 2021, as measured by ransom size. The full list is also tabulated below.

VictimCountryIndustryAmount paid or requested (USD millions)
MicrosoftU.S.TechnologyUndisclosed
Kia MotorsSouth KoreaAutomotive$20M*
BombardierCanadaAviationUndisclosed
CNA FinancialU.S.Financial Services$40M
Harris FederationUKEducation$8M*
Colonial PipelineU.S.Energy$4.4M
BrenntagGermanChemicals$4.4M
JBSCanadaFood$11M
KaseyaU.S.Technology$70M*
AccentureU.S.Technology$50M*
AcerTaiwanTechnology$50M*

*Requested but not paid in full. Source: Microsoft (2021), CRN (2021)

Continue reading below for details on some of these extraordinary hacks.

Energy: Colonial Pipeline Co.

The Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack was the largest ever cyberattack on an American oil infrastructure target.

On May 7, hackers took down the company’s billing system and threatened to release stolen data if a ransom was not paid. During negotiations, the company halted its pipelines, resulting in gas shortages across the Southeastern United States.

It’s been reported that Colonial Pipeline promptly paid a ransom of $4.4 million in bitcoin (based on prices at the time). The FBI managed to retrieve some of these bitcoins, but their exact method was not revealed.

Technology: Accenture

Accenture, one of the world’s largest IT consultants, fell victim to a (Read more...)