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st: -beamplot- now on SSC


From   "Nick Cox" <n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk>
To   <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   st: -beamplot- now on SSC
Date   Mon, 27 Jun 2005 14:09:57 +0100

Thanks to Kit Baum, a -beamplot- package is 
now on SSC, as promised on 24 May on this list. 

Stata 9 is required. 

-beamplot- encapsulates a classic idea, that 
of the mean as the centre of gravity of 
a distribution, to produce horizontal dotplots
on which a beam is shown as "supporting" the 
data (mathematical/physical pun intended)
and a fulcrum is shown at the point at
which the dotplot would balance. 

You may be reminded of the principle of a 
	see-saw 
	teeter totter
	bascule 
	Wippe 
or whatever you call it in your language. 

Those who like -dotplots- and have been Stata 
users for some time will know of official Stata's
long support for the -dotplot- command. 

You can have any orientation of 
-dotplot- you like, so long as it is vertical. The 
original authors of -dotplot- had a horizontal
version, but that got left behind a long while 
ago. 

By contrast, -beamplot- produces (only) horizontal 
displays, as is implied by the centre-of-gravity 
idea. 

Among various other differences between -dotplot- and 
-beamplot-, perhaps the most notable is that -beamplot-
supports both -over()- and -by()-. 

Up to Stata 8, -dotplot, by()- produced separate dotplots within 
a graph panel. This was non-standard syntax, as 
compared with other graphics commands, and from 
Stata 9, this option has been re-named -over(), and 
-by()- is now not allowed.  

There is no intrinsic reason why both should not 
be supported, and I sent StataCorp a version of 
-dotplot- which does precisely that. Changing the code is only 
part of the matter, as StataCorp would also have 
to change the help, dialog and test script files. 

Anyway, my -beamplot- does allow both -over()- and -by()-. 

There are some references in the help file, but I repeat
my request for extra literature references, especially for 
much older or better ones than those given. 

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

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