Articles by R on

Four Dataviz Posters

February 25, 2019 | R on

I was asked for some examples of posters I’ve made using R and ggplot. Here are four. Some of these are done from start to finish in R, others involved some post-processing in Illustrator, usually to adjust some typographical elements or add text in a sidebar. I’ve linked ... [Read more...]


February 7, 2019 | R on

I am stuck at home sick today, so I decided to provide a relational analysis of the Stats Package Wars that have been bubbling away for the past week. True in all its details. If you want something slightly more constructive, consider The Plain Person’s Guide to Plain-Text Social ... [Read more...]

Dataviz Course Packet Quickstart

January 2, 2019 | R on

Chapter 2 of Data Visualization walks you through setting up an R Project, and takes advantage of R Studio’s support for RMarkdown templates. That is, once you’ve created your project in R Studio, can choose File __ New File __ R Markdown, like this: Select R Markdown … And then choose “From ... [Read more...]

French Mortality Poster

December 27, 2018 | R on

Based on the heatmaps I drew earlier this month, I made a poster of two centuries of data on mortality rates in France for males and females. It turned out reasonably well, I think. I will probably get it blown up to a nice large size and put it up ... [Read more...]

Canada Map

December 9, 2018 | R on

I taught my Data Visualization seminar in Philadelphia this past Friday and Saturday. It covers most of the content of my book, including a unit on making maps. The examples in the book are from the United States. But what about other places? Two of the participants were from Canada, ... [Read more...]

Heatmaps of Mortality Rates

December 4, 2018 | R on

As part of the run-up to the release of Data Visualization (out in about ten days! Currently 30% off on Amazon!), I’ve been playing with graphing different kinds of data. One great source of rich time-series data is, which hosts a collection of standardized demographic data for a ... [Read more...]

Zero Counts in dplyr

November 19, 2018 | R on

Here’s a feature of dplyr that occasionally bites me (most recently while making these graphs). It’s about to change mostly for the better, but is also likely to bite me again in the future. If you want to follow along there’s a GitHub repo with the necessary ... [Read more...]

Congress Over Time

November 17, 2018 | R on

Since the U.S. midterm elections I’ve been playing around with some Congressional Quarterly data about the composition of the House and Senate since 1945. Unfortunately I’m not allowed to share the data, but here are two or three things I had to do with it that you might ... [Read more...]

Spreading Multiple Values

November 6, 2018 | R on

Earlier this year my colleague Steve Vaisey was converting code in some course notes from Stata to R. He asked me a question about tidily converting from long to wide format when you have multiple value columns. This is a little more awkward than it should be, and I’ve ... [Read more...]

Visualizing the Baby Boom

April 10, 2018 | R on

To close out what has become demography week, I combined the US monthly birth data with data for England and Wales (from the same ONS source as before), so that I could look at the trends together. The monthly England and Wales data I have to hand runs from 1938 to 1991. ... [Read more...]

Animated Population Pyramids in R

April 8, 2018 | R on

Amateur demography week continues around here. Today we are looking at the population of England and Wales since 1961, courtesy of some data from the UK Office of National Statistics. We have data on population counts by age (in nice, detailed, yearly increments) broken down by sex. We’re going to ... [Read more...]

Us Monthly Births

April 7, 2018 | R on

Yesterday I came across Aaron Penne’s collection of very nice data visualizations, one of which was of monthly births in the United States since 1933. He made a tiled heatmap of the data, taking care when calculating the average rate to correct for the varying number of days in different ... [Read more...]
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