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st: RE: Re: -pieplot- available from SSC

From   "Nick Cox" <>
To   <>
Subject   st: RE: Re: -pieplot- available from SSC
Date   Wed, 14 Oct 2009 15:37:08 +0100

The question of radar or spider plots has arisen before. Typing 

. findit radar 

would have pointed you to Adrian Mander's -radar- on SSC. Two generic problems for radar or spider graphs are comparing values that are not close by and comparing with numeric scales, which are usually only tacit. 

Various graphs for circular data are included in -circular- on SSC. Although set up for data measured in degrees, they are applicable to some extent to data on other circular scales. I gave a talk on this package at the London users' meeting in September.  

I don't agree that data that are seasonal (diurnal, etc.) are usually better plotted in circular diagrams. In fact 80 or 90 years ago, Brinton and Karsten were scathing about such graphs in their compendia,  e.g. 

Karsten, K. 1923. Graphs and charts. New York: Prentice-Hall, p.237 "When the clock-chart has been well and carefully drawn, it is ready for the waste-basket."

Karsten is perhaps more widely remembered for having had the basic idea of a hedge fund; these days that may not seem much of an honour. 

For more constructive suggestions on plotting seasonal data -- adaptable to other cycles -- see 

SJ-9-2  gr0037  . . . . . . . .  Stata tip 76: Separating seasonal time series
        . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  N. J. Cox
        Q2/09   SJ 9(2):321--326                                 (no commands)
        tip on separating seasonal time series

SJ-6-3  gr0025  . . . . . . . . . . . . Speaking Stata: Graphs for all seasons
        (help cycleplot, sliceplot if installed)  . . . . . . . . .  N. J. Cox
        Q3/06   SJ 6(3):397--419
        illustrates producing graphs showing time-series seasonality

The earlier of these papers is accessible to all in .pdf form on the Stata Journal website, as it came out just over three years ago. It's one of the Speaking Stata columns I'm most fond of. 


José Maria

does Stata have a graph like 
*radar* of Excel  to present data that are cyclical, with variables like 
months, days of the week, seasons etc.?

*   For searches and help try:

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