All articles with 'charting principles' Tag

The Grammy Bump Chart in Excel

Published on Feb 22, 2011 in Charts and Graphs
The Grammy Bump Chart in Excel

The folks at Washington Post made an interesting chart to understand whether winning a Grammy award makes any difference to album sales. Go ahead and browse it if you have not already seen it. Go, I will wait.

Are you impressed?

I really liked this chart. This is what I liked about the chart,

  • It tells a story.
  • It is an ego chart. We would all instantly search for our favorite artists and learn about how Grammy award changed their album sales.
  • It is a simple chart. No clutter, no gaudy colors, just a bunch of lines and the story is out there.
  • It lets you play.

In fact, I liked the chart so much that I wanted to make it in Excel.. You can see a snapshot of what I came up with above. Read the rest of this article to learn more.

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How would you Visualize World Education Ranking Data [Homework + Video]

Published on Dec 20, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
How would you Visualize World Education Ranking Data [Homework + Video]

Here is a charting challenge to begin your Christmas week. Recently Guardian’s Data Blog released World Education Rankings data and a sample visualization. Now your challenge is to make your chart visualizing World Education Rankings data.

You can see the chart I have constructed above. Read the rest of the post to find out how I made this chart and download the workbook.

Post your submissions using comments.

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Do you use (or make) Excel Dashboards? Tell us about yourself to win a free training kit

Published on Dec 16, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
Do you use (or make) Excel Dashboards? Tell us about yourself to win a free training kit

(You can win my latest Excel Dashboard Training kit free, read this post to find out how.)

Over at Jorge’s ExcelCharts blog, he started a very good discussion on Excel Dashboards: Who needs them anyway?.

Jorge has very good experience designing, working on and teaching about dashboards. So he uses all that skill to gaze in to a crystal ball, to understand who needs excel dashboards and why. In this post, I build on his argument and ask you the big question – “If you make or use Excel Dashboards, who are you?”

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Show Top 10 Values in Dashboards using Pivot Tables

Published on Dec 1, 2010 in Charts and Graphs, Pivot Tables & Charts
Show Top 10 Values in Dashboards using Pivot Tables

A good dashboard must show important information at a glance and provide option to drill down for details.

Showing Top 10 (or bottom 10) lists in a dashboard is a good way to achieve this (see aside). Today we will learn an interesting technique to do this in Excel.

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Show Months & Years in Charts without Cluttering

Published on Nov 17, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
Show Months & Years in Charts without Cluttering

We make charts with date axis all the time. So, today we will learn how to set up axis settings in Excel so that Months & Years are shown neatly structured without cluttering your chart. See the example next to understand.

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Analyze Competition with Scatter Plots – A business chart example

Published on Oct 25, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
Analyze Competition with Scatter Plots – A business chart example

Analyzing competition is one of the key aspects of running a business. In this article, learn how to use Excel’s scatter plots to understand competition, like shown aside.

The inspiration for this comes from a recent article on Asymco analyzing mobile handset market (Apple iPhone, Nokia etc.) and how it has changed since 2007.

Read the rest of the post to learn how to create this type of chart in excel. Also, you can download the chart template. Go ahead.

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August 2010 – Best Month Ever (and 2 charting tips inside)

Published on Sep 3, 2010 in blogging, Charts and Graphs
August 2010 – Best Month Ever (and 2 charting tips inside)

Time to stop everything we do and celebrate, for, our little community at chandoo.org had the most fantastic, awesome month ever.

That is right. August 2010 has been the best month since I started chandoo.org. We have broken a majority of previous records in terms of conversations, connections, content and revenues.

In August, we had 17 posts, with 604 comments. We had 178,000 visitors reading 453,000 pages. Our RSS subscriber base grew to 11,917 (it was 5738 an year ago). August has been the best month in-terms of revenues too. We sold highest number of project management templates & excel formula e-books since launch. We had a stellar launch for wedding planner with 22 customers.

Read rest of this post to find statistics about chandoo.org and get 2 charting tips.

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How do you make charts when you have lots of small values but few extremely large values? [Debate]

Published on Aug 20, 2010 in Charts and Graphs, Featured, Learn Excel
How do you make charts when you have lots of small values but few extremely large values? [Debate]

Here is an interesting charting problem we come across once in a while. We have a lot of small numbers and a few very large numbers. How do we effectively plot all of them in a chart?

Now, how do you go about making a chart?

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5 Rules for Making Better Charts (and one fun chart)

Published on Jul 30, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
5 Rules for Making Better Charts (and one fun chart)

Jeff Weir, an alert reader of this blog points me this chart showcasing voice-over artist’s for various Simpson’s characters. I am a hard-core Simpon’s fan, so I naturally wasted quarter-hour looking at the chart. That is when I realize this chart is not only fun, it also teaches 5 valuable lessons on making better charts. Read the rest of this post to find out the five rules.

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Display Alerts in Dashboards to Grab User Attention [Quick Tip]

Published on May 25, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
Display Alerts in Dashboards to Grab User Attention [Quick Tip]

Dashboards can be overwhelming with lots of details and context. A simple way to drag user’s attention to important stuff in the dashboard is to use alerts. See this example to understand what alerts mean. How to display alerts in Excel Dashboards? The easiest way to display alerts is to use Excel 2007’s Conditional Formatting […]

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Excel Links – Project Management Edition

Published on May 3, 2010 in excel links

It has been quite a while since we had an excel links post. It doesn’t mean that I am not reading anything new on excel or charting. I have been reading lots of awesome articles and useful content and sharing it on my google reader recommendation list. But it is just that I have been […]

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What are your favorite colors for charts?

Published on Apr 23, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
What are your favorite colors for charts?

Ok, it is Friday again. That means poll time. I would like to know what color choices you prefer for your charts?
My Favorite Colors for Charting are,

These are the colors I use when making charts in Excel 2007 (it has capability to set any color for chart elements).

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How to Select Right Chart for your Data

Published on Apr 19, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
How to Select Right Chart for your Data

Bar chart or Line? Scatter plot or box plot? These are the questions we ask ourselves when we set out to make a chart. Because, “Selecting right chart for our data” is very important to tell our story.

In this article, we will learn how to “select the right chart” based on our data and situation.

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Speaking at TechEd 2010 on “How to Select the Right Chart for your Data”

Published on Apr 13, 2010 in blogging, Charts and Graphs
Speaking at TechEd 2010 on “How to Select the Right Chart for your Data”

I have come to Bangalore to attend the TechEd 2010 conference by Microsoft. Today (April 13th), I will be speaking on “How to select the right chart for your data”. A short talk telling people how to choose the correct chart based on the message they want to convey. [You can see the schedule and […]

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Make your Chart Legends Legendary

Published on Apr 8, 2010 in Charts and Graphs
Make your Chart Legends Legendary

We all know that legend can be added to a chart to provide useful information, color codes etc.

Today we will learn how to make the chart legends smarter so that they provide more meaning and context to the chart, like this:

This type of legend can be more useful than a plain legend as this provides more useful information without taking up too much space.

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