Mapping methods called diffusion cartograms (diffusion-based density-equalising maps), are used by geographers to present visually interesting plots for data such as income, health, voting patterns, and resource availability. I have used these methods to portray numerical data properties of the elements. The periodic table is treated as a map of square countries and distorted using a diffusion cartogram algorithm to display periodic properties, in this case the density of the elements.
See Mark J. Winter, Diffusion Cartograms for the Display of Periodic Table Data, J. Chem. Educ., 2011, 88, pp 1507–1510. DOI: 10.1021/ed1000203 (http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/ed1000203)