42 posts
Canadian winters in cold gray

I was looking at some Canadian data graphics while planning my talk in Vancouver this Thursday (you can register for the free talk here). I love the concept behind the following chart: Based on the forecasted temperature for 2015 (specifically the temperature on Christmas Eve), the reporter for National Post asked whether the winter of 2015 would be colder or warmer than the winters on record since 1990. The accompanying...

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Reorientation in the French election

Financial Times has this chart up about the voters for the National Front, which is Marie Le Pen's party. I find the chart very hard to decipher, even though I usually like the dot plot format. The first thing to figure out is not visual. It's a definition of the data. The average voter represents those who voted in the 2015 regional election. The National Front voters are those who...

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Why is this chart so damn hard to read?

My summer course on analytical methods is already at the midway point. I was doing some research on recommendation systems the other day, and came across the following chart: Ouch. This is from the Park, et. al. (2012) survey of research papers on this subject. It's the 21st century, people. The column chart copies the older-generation Excel design made infamous by Tufte, and since abandoned. Looking more closely, I suspect...

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Members Only: Adding Legends in R

Make sure you explain your visual encodings so that others can interpret them. Read More

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Where but when and why: deaths of journalism

On Twitter, someone pointed me to the following map of journalists who were killed between 1993 and 2015. I wasn't sure if the person who posted this liked or disliked this graphic. We see a clear metaphor of gunshots and bloodshed. But in delivering the metaphor, a number of things are sacrificed: the number of deaths is hard to read the location of deaths is distorted, both in large countries...

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