November 2009

Deceptive Charts #2

20 November 2009

Last month I wrote about the dangers of secondary axes, but even charts with a single axis can be deceiving. I have been reflecting on this after reading Jon Peltier’s critique of Microsoft’s “professional” charting tutorials earlier this week. One of the charts Peltier takes issue with is a column chart which has the value […]

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Mahalo 3.0: my new mechanical Turk

19 November 2009

Almost a year ago I posted about using twitter as my very own mechanial Turk. Here’s part of what I wrote back then: The original mechanical Turk was an 18th century machine that purported to be able to play chess. It was, however, a hoax as a human hidden inside the machine was actually doing […]

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Hot and Dry Days Ahead for Australia

13 November 2009

Earlier this month, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology released the October figure for the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI). It showed a precipitous plunge of almost 20 points down to -14.6. Just how significant a drop this is can be seen in the chart below, which shows the distribution of monthly changes in the SOI going […]

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Melbourne Cup by Numbers

2 November 2009

I don’t know anything about horses. Ever since I was bitten by one at the Easter Show as a small child, they have ranked very low on my animal preference list: only just above geese. Still, at this time of year almost everyone in Australia gets caught up in some way with the Melbourne Cup, […]

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