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I have recently become a Quora addict, and you can see why it is such a great site. If possible say hello to me there at
My latest favorite question-
What are the most hilarious pie charts?
I am only showing you some of the answers, you can see the rest yourself.
The Analytics (or stats) dashboard at WordPress.com continues to disappoint, and is a major reason for people to move out of WordPress.com hosting (since they need better analytics like that by Google Analytics which cant be enabled on the default mode)
Its not really beautiful unlike the rest of WordPress Universe!
It can be made better if people try harder! Analytics matters
Here are some points
1) Bar charts and Histograms are not really the best way to visualize trends across time
4) I cant even export my traffic stats (and forget an api !) so I am stuck with the bad data viz here
The Google Visualization API is a great way for people to make dashboards with slick graphics based on data without getting into the fine print of the scripting language itself. It utilizes the same tools as Google itself does, and makes visualizing data using API calls to the Visualization API. Thus a real-time customizable dashboard that is publishable to the internet can be created within minutes, and more importantly insights can be much more easily drawn from graphs than from looking at rows of tables and numbers.
- There are 41 gadgets (including made by both Google and third-party developers ) available in the Gadget Gallery ( https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/gadgetgallery)
- There are 12 kinds of charts available in the Chart Gallery (https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/gallery) .
- However there 26 additional charts in the charts page at https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/more_charts )
Building and embedding charts is simplified to a few steps
- Load the AJAX API
- Load the Visualization API and the appropriate package (like piechart or barchart from the kinds of chart)
- Set a callback to run when the Google Visualization API is loaded
- Within the Callback – It creates and populates a data table, instantiates the particular chart type chosen, passes in the data and draws it.
- Create the data table with appropriately named columns and data rows.
- Set chart options with Title, Width and Height
- Instantiate and draw the chart, passing in some options including the name and id
- Finally write the HTML/ Div that will hold the chart
You can simply copy and paste the code directly from https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/quick_start without getting into any details, and tweak them according to your data, chart preference and voila your web dashboard is ready!
That is the beauty of working with API- you can create and display genius ideas without messing with the scripting languages and code (too much). If you like to dive deeper into the API, you can look at the various objects at https://developers.google.com/chart/interactive/docs/reference
First launched in Mar 2008, Google Visualization API has indeed come a long way in making dashboards easier to build for people wanting to utilize advanced data visualization . It came about directly as a result of Google’s 2007 acquisition of GapMinder (of Hans Rosling fame).
As invariably and inevitably computing shifts to the cloud, visualization APIs will be very useful. Tableau Software has been a pioneer in selling data visualizing to the lucrative business intelligence and business dashboards community (you can see the Tableau Software API at http://onlinehelp.tableausoftware.com/v7.0/server/en-us/embed_api.htm ), and Google Visualization can do the same and capture business dashboard and visualization market , if there is more focus on integrating it from Google in it’s multiple and often confusing API offerings.
However as of now, this is quite simply the easiest way to create a web dashboard for your personal needs. Google guarantees 3 years of backward compatibility with this API and it is completely free.
JMP , the visual data exploration, statistical quality control software from SAS Institute launched version 10 of its software today.
JMP 10 includes:
Numerous enhancements to the drag-and-drop Graph Builder, including a new iPad application.
A cutting-edge Control Chart Builder to create process control charts with drag-and-drop ease.
New reliability capabilities, including growth and forecast models.
Additions and improvements for sorting and filtering data, design of experiments, statistical modeling, scripting, add-in and application development, script debugging and more.
From JohnSall’s blog post at http://blogs.sas.com/content/jmp/2012/03/20/discover-more-with-jmp-10/
Much of the development centered on four focus areas:
1. Graph Builder everywhere. The Graph Builder platform itself has new features like Heatmap and Treemap, an elements palette and properties panel, making the choices more visible. But Graph Builder also has some descendents now, including the new Control Chart Builder, which makes creating control charts an interactive process. In addition, some of the drag-and-drop features that are used to change columns in Graph Builder are also available in Distribution, Fit Y by X, and a few other places. Finally, Graph Builder has been ported to the iPad. For the first time, you can use JMP for exploration and presentation on a mobile device for free. So just think of Graph Builder as gradually taking over in lots of places.
2. Expert-driven design.reliability, measurement systems, and partial least squares analyses.
3. Performance. this release has the most new multithreading so far
4. Application development
You can read more here -http://jmp.com/about/events/webcasts/jmpwebcast_detail.shtml?reglink=70130000001r9IP
By request, an analysis of Top 5 XKCDs on data visualization. Statisticians and Data Scientists to note-
1) DOT PLOT
2) LINE PLOTS
3) FLOW CHARTS
4) PIE CHARTS and 5) BAR GRAPHS
I am not going into the big big graphs of course like the Star Wars Plot data visualization at
Now I gotta find me a software that can write my blog for me
A really nice use for R is education
Concerto: R-Based Online Adaptive Testing Platform
Concerto is a web based, adaptive testing platform for creating and running rich, dynamic tests. It combines the flexibility of HTML presentation with the computing power of the R language, and the safety and performance of the MySQL database. It’s totally free for commercial and academic use, and it’s open source. If you have any questions, you feel like generously supporting the project, or you want to develop a commerical test on the platform, feel free to email Michal Kosinski.
We rely as much as possible on popular open source packages in order to maximize the safety and reliability of the system, and to ensure that its elements are kept up-to-date.
Why choose Concerto?
- Simple to use: Check our Step-by-Step tutorial to see how to create a test in minutes.
- Flexibility: You can use the R engine to apply virtually any IRT or CAT models.
- Scalability: Modular design, MySQL tables, and low system requirements allow the testing of thousands for pennies.
- Reliability: Concerto relies on popular, constantly updated, and reliable elements used by millions of users world-wide.
- Elegant feedback and items: The flexibility of the HTML layer and the power of R allow you to use (or generate on the fly!) polished multi-media items, as well as feedback full of graphs and charts generated by R for each test taker.
- Low costs: It’s free and open-source!
- Project’s website at Google Code
- Tutorial: Create a simple test step-by-step
- Tutorial: Create an adaptive test with Concerto
- Concerto Manual
- CAT Concerto
Before installing concerto you may prefer to test it using a demo account on our server.Email Michal Kosinski in order to get demo account.
- Project hosted at: Google Code
Training in Concerto:
Next session 9th Dec 2011: book early!
Commercial tests and Concerto:
Concerto is an open-source project so anyone can use it free of charge, even for commercial purposes. However, it might be faster and less expensive to hire our experienced team to develop your test, provide support and maintenance, and take responsibility for its smooth and reliable operation. Contact us!