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RE: st: logarithmic scales


From   "Nick Cox" <n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk>
To   <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   RE: st: logarithmic scales
Date   Thu, 27 Nov 2003 18:12:57 -0000

Agreed. I formulated my question in terms
of Stata's defaults given -xscale(log)-
and how to improve on them in a way that
can be automated. I'm interested in,
among other things, how far those
defaults appear natural or acceptable
to others.

If you approach it from the other side
and start with log of something as your
variable, then indeed the labels are by default
equally spaced on a log scale, but one
would often prefer to show labels on
an original antilogged scale. Again, that's not
a Stata default, if I recall correctly,
but it would be easy enough to provide
one's own default, and the logic would
be broadly similar to that outlined.

Nick
n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk

R. Allan Reese

> One choice you might consider is whether to draw x on a log
> scale or
> logx on its own scale.  If you take the log first, it's easier to
> control the range and labelling.  The second choice is
> whether you, and
> your readers, find it easier to work in x or logx.  With
> Stata8 it's
> easy to plot 1,2,3 but label 10,100,1000.  I agree with Tufte that
> labels should carry information, not be treated as scaffolding from
> when you were plotting points by hand.  So I am regularly defining
> scale labels as part of editing a graph, and using varying
> numbers of
> figures to show maximum information.
> Eg yla(0 1(2)7 8.02 "8.02", format(%4.0f) angle(0) labsize(*.8))

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