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data visualization | Design and Analytics

data visualization

Geography is Destiny (or totally made up)

...and maps are great.  As I learn mapping software, I've shown the following map to three smart people, who didn't notice anything out of the ordinary, except the sharp cut-off of Antarctica:

Buster Map

Did you catch it?  I look at this, and it's deeply dissonant to my brain.

A Network Graph of CRAN package dependencies

Continuing on my recent project of making interactive network graphs (on projects where other brilliant people have already done the difficult querying), here's a visualization of the CRAN package dependencies.  Sure, the philosophers graph is maybe more interesting, but this is a very real map of people power, too---and maybe as influential in these statistical times. 

The absolutely artful data munging here comes from librestats.  Check out his post!

CRAN view

 

Visual Social Network Analysis in R and Gephi Part II

Resuming from last time, I've made some updates to the philosophers' social network including publishing two interactive maps.  Quick introduction: you know that sidebar on wikipedia where it tells you someone was influenced by someone else, linking to them?  These graphs are generated from asking wikipedia for a comprehensive list of every philosopher's influence on every other.  There are some sample-bias issues and data problems I went over in the first part of the series, but overall it's both beautiful and interesting.

Interactive visuals

The first lets you zoom dynamically and makes it easier to see local networks.  When you hover over individual philosophers, those who are not linked to them or from them disappear.  This uses a tool called sigma.js.

Go ahead, click it.

The second lets you...

Visualizing the History of Philosophy as a social network: The Problem with Hegel

How Important is Hegel?!

I was surprised I hadn't seen this graphic at Drunks and Lampposts made with Gephi until a friend posted it on facebook last week.  The original is here, and here's my version:

 

Graph History of Philosophy

Using a scrape of the data behind wikipedia's sidebar for philosophers, Simon Rapier put together a fantastic visualization of the schools and interconnections among philosophers.  Griffsgraphs followed up by expanding the scrape to the entire network of influencers and influenced on wikipedia.  Both of these are insightful humanities studies in graphs and visualization---even though the algorithm wasn't told which common ideas link Hegel and Marx, it saw that they were similar enough to be grouped together (shown by making them the same color), and that the way Hegel influenced, say, Husserl, was different enough to warrant another school, simply by observing a different group of people followed them.

That's a solid aggregation of a lot of humanities information.  Who knew Skynet's tweed jacket had patches on the elbows?

However, looking at the original graphs on D&L and Griffs, I was struck that...

Complex causality for 37signals NYT opinion; or Tigers

I really liked this story on the 37signals blog yesterday where Jason Fried explained the process of seemingly serendipitous events that led to his being asked to write an opinion piece in the New York Times.  I've been working with network visualization lately and turned his story into the graphic below, which they've kindly posted back to the 37 signals blog

Image Showing how to get into the New York Times

Opening for Clients; Hire me

I have an opening to take on more hours of client work beginning in mid-September.  Please feel free to contact me if you're looking for support in forecasting, automation, quantitative design, social network analysis---or anything I've written about here.

Recession Beard? Time Series in R (Part II)

In Part I, we showed how to plot a time series of the change in American beards over time, using a dataset from Robert Hyndman's time series data library.  Today, we're going to look at whether the dramatic changes in American male beardfulness seem related to the economy.  Did Americans grow recession beards in response to the Panic of 1873?  Out of work, did they forgo their frequent trips to the barber (since Gillette didn't invent the personal safety razor until 1904 so they could do it themselves)?  Did they go on their job interviews with a face full of mutton chops and just never get called back (by telegram)?

What you'll learn

  • How to apply recession shading, according to the NBER's recession dates, to a time series---easily.
  • How to change the color of the recession shading
  • Whether 19th century gentlemen grew recession beards after losing their jobs in algo trading, you know, just taking some time off to study graphic design for a little bit.

American Beards Over Time: Time Series in R (Part I)

If you use R for time series analysis, chances are you've used Robert J. Hyndman's excellent forecast tools.  I recently stumbled on his time series data library where I found just the data set I've been looking for to show some R time series plotting tricks:

http://robjhyndman.com/tsdldata/roberts/beards.dat

It's the percentage of American men with full beards reported annually.  Nothing serious here, but absurdly perfect for a set of posts to share a couple things that took me a while to learn when plotting in R.

What you'll learn

  • How to grab data from a plaintext source on the web, stripping header information
  • How to convert a list of data with a known start time and end time into an xts time series object
  • How to convert xts to a data.frame for plotting in ggplot2
  • Aesthetics for red data points with dotted line interpolation
  • How much American beardfulness there was in the late 19th century and early 20th.

Map of Credit Ratings using R and Google maps' API

This is a repost from the R-bloggers mailing list, with a quick script showing credit rating on a global map.  It displays sovereign credit ratings by S&P, Fitch, Moody's, and Chinese rating firm, Dagong, and demonstrates how easy it's become to create beautiful data visualizations. 

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