Comparing Obama’s Presidential Approval Rating

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

More bad news for President Obama, via CBS News

As concerns about the struggling U.S. economy grow, a new CBS News/New York poll finds that President Obama’s overall approval rating has dropped to 43 percent, the lowest so far of his presidency in CBS News polling. In addition, his disapproval rating has reached an all-time high of 50 percent.

Gallup now has a approval rating tracker that allows you to compare presidents. Here’s how George W. Bush and his father, George H.W. Bush, fared at this point in their respective presidencies. The elder Bush dropped into Obama’s range and ultimately lost his re-election. Obama’s predecessor in the White House never sunk this low in the polls during his first term: 

Here’s the younger Bush’s full term compared to Obama thus far:

Here’s a comparison with Bill Clinton. This must offer the White House some hope: 

This one, too, perhaps. It’s Ronald Reagan’s approval: 

And, finally, Harry Truman: 

See larger, interactive version

It’s Easy to Draw Your Own Google Correlations

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

I’m a big fan of Google Correlate, a service that lets you spot real-word trends through Internet users’ searches. For example, search traffic for the term “lose weight” spikes around New Year’s Day: 

friend this morning told me about a new feature allowing anyone to draw random distributions on a line graph — and then see others’ correlated searches. You can also download the data from Google. 

In this graph, I drew a 45-degree decline (seen as a blue line). Google then charted search traffic (red line) for a specific term that’s similar over time. Here, you can see how people have gradually stopped searching for “flash movie” since 2004. 

Sorry, Adobe: 

Some searches have exploded, like “wordpress integration.” Good news for folks like Andrew Nacin.

This chart shows that QR codes have spiked recently. Perhaps there’s a correlation between that and the fact that someone at my office posted a QR code explainer in the elevator. 

Go draw something and send it to me. 

UPDATE: The first submission is from Kate Martin, whose chart correlates with “american spiders”. Not sure what to make of this trend: 

UPDATE 2: Love this one from Jed Sundwall

D.C. Bound

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

My wife and I are moving to Washington, D.C., in the coming weeks. She’ll be working for NPR, and I’m staying in my current job working remotely. Our move got me thinking about this fabulous migration map created last year by Jon Bruner, an editor at Forbes who works interactive projects.

Click the image to play with the map, which uses IRS returns data to determine inward and outward population flow in every U.S. county. Very sweet:

Bruner explains his process here.