Abstract

The accurate representation of data is essential in science communication. However, colour maps that visually distort data through uneven colour gradients or are unreadable to those with colour-vision deficiency remain prevalent in science. These include, but are not limited to, rainbow-like and red–green colour maps. Here, we present a simple guide for the scientific use of colour. We show how scientifically derived colour maps report true data variations, reduce complexity, and are accessible for people with colour-vision deficiencies. We highlight ways for the scientific community to identify and prevent the misuse of colour in science, and call for a proactive step away from colour misuse among the community, publishers, and the press.

Links and resources

DOI:
10.1038/s41467-020-19160-7
URL:
https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-020-19160-7
BibTeX key:
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