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st: Use of pie charts

From   "Allan Reese (Cefas)" <>
To   <>
Subject   st: Use of pie charts
Date   Wed, 14 Oct 2009 15:11:20 +0100

I'd agree with all Nick's comments.  Piecharts are poor because they are
suitable only for very low data-density and because the perception
relies on comparing areas that are proxies for angles.  A notably bad
example recently in a newspaper had angles that were clearly not
proportional to the data.  I was able to reproduce the pies by adding a
column containing 100, rather than 100-x.  Try plotting
   20 100  /* for 20%
   30 100  /* for 30% etc

Wrote twice to the editor but got no response.

R Allan Reese
Senior statistician, Cefas
The Nothe, Weymouth DT4 8UB 

Tel: +44 (0)1305 206614 -direct
Fax: +44 (0)1305 206601 

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