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Re: st: RE: Hatched bars, again

From   Fred Wolfe <>
Subject   Re: st: RE: Hatched bars, again
Date   Fri, 6 Feb 2009 08:56:35 -0600

On Fri, Feb 6, 2009 at 8:37 AM, Nick Cox <> wrote:
> I am not clear on the connection here.

The connection ... Although I mostly agree with Nick, the point of my
email was to provide some additional evidence that at least some
journals editors want "hatched bars."

A second, perhaps hidden, point was that this journal doesn't like
grey borders. So that perhaps Stata might want to consider adding a
default non-grey bordered scheme.

As for me, I can modify the scheme myself or edit it in the graph
editor... and I was able to convince the copy editor on the telephone
that the  graph was quite readable with hatching.


> Fred reports an exchange with an editor about the rendering of various
> greys in a diagram in a paper. The diagram shows three box plots.
> Fred also used the title "hatched bars", which gave Sergiy a good
> opportunity to remind us of his implementation of area shadings.
> Does Fred want to be able to fill the boxes of his box plots?
> I've always found informative text (which could be numeric) the simplest
> way to distinguish different box plots. That applies where the plots are
> for distinct groups, variables or combinations.
> Incidentally, although grey requires care, I've had no problems
> publishing Stata-produced plots as diagrams in journals in my part of
> science.
> Nick
> Fred Wolfe
> Although this subject has been aired before, I though this letter from
> a journal copy editor to me might put the issues practically. I sent a
> paired -graph box - with three shades of grey using scheme(s2mono).
> Not one should worry, as I will fix it with the editor, but the letter
> is interesting.
> "Dr. Wolfe,
> With respect, the artwork sent for this article  does not meet minimum
> standards for print reproduction <snip> ...  you will note the fine
> lines and details of the text and art are blurred and turning 'grey'
> or disappearing. And complicating the problem, there's a frame of grey
> shading all around the 2 graphs (an artefact from the original slide)
> that will show up in print as a distracting mess of shadow.
> As a general guideline, artwork intended for publication should be
> prepared in black and white only, with no grey-colored shading or
> lines, because material in grey cannot be printed clearly with good
> contrast.  Where a different 'color' is needed to differentiate data
> or columns, cross-hatching effects in black and white are useful.
> As well, for best quality reproduction, it is best if charts and
> graphs are sent to us in the original program in which they were
> created (such as MicroSoft Word or Excel), not as "image scans" in
> MicroSoft Document format. When an image is scanned, it inevitably
> loses some sharpness of detail. But with artwork in the original
> program we are sometimes able to make adjustments for clarity of
> print.
> The department of publications at  one of the authors' institutions
> may be able to assist in preparation of  good quality artwork that
> communicates your data effectively.
> Is it possible that better quality artwork could be prepared somehow?"
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Fred Wolfe
National Data Bank for Rheumatic Diseases
Wichita, Kansas
NDB Office  +1 316 263 2125 Ext 0
Research Office +1 316 686 9195
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