Who doesn't love a good infographic right? But not all infographics are good. To democratize Data visualization is great in theory but making presentations more accessible seemed like a great idea too.
Instead we end up with word documents and cue cards with animation masquerading as a presentation.
What makes a good infographic is how it makes the data accessible. Visualization makes it easier to draw conclusions about the data versus just staring at numbers. There is a conclusion to be drawn, an end in mind. To accomplish that requires design principles, an understanding of the data and the point of the dataset.
How many presentations have you seen that you didn't get the point? Some might have had some great graphics and but in the end there was no convincing, there was no end-goal. Even Mr. Langille admits that many people Hate powerpoint now.
Visual.ly needs to aim higher than powerpoint. I think they will do great in the short-term. With their concept of themes and constraining the datasets to hashtags, FB pages they will be able to ensure quality design. Once they open up to other datasets such as poll data if they open up the themes you could a lot of fugly infographics.