Best of ‘The Daily Viz’

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

I started this little blog 10 months ago as a place to post my experiments with data visualization. Some posts have flopped, but a few caught fire. Here are the top eight, ordered by popularity: 

1. Mapping Where GOP Candidates Raise Their Campaign Donations

2. Mapping London Riots, ‘Deprivation’

3. Rick Perry and Jobs

4. Analyzing Two Rick Perry Speeches: 1998 vs. 2011

5. D.C. Crime By Political Wards

6. Mapping 2011 Earthquakes

7. Shaq’s Career Stats

8. Another View of ONA

As always, I welcome feedback and suggestions for future visualizations. To the (still small but growing group of) readers out there, thank you for the interest. 

Google Search Insights: Occupy Wall Street vs. Tea Party

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

Google’s politics and elections team compared search trends for the Occupy Wall Street movement and the Tea Party. Here’s what they found: 

  • Searches for Occupy Wall Street started on Sept 16th & peaked one month later on October 15th
  • NY is tops in searches, right? Wrong. Top 3 states for most “Occupy” searches: Vermont, Oregon, New York
  • Search interest in OWS is higher than the Tea Party. Both currently and in looking at the birth of each
  • Searches for the Tea Party peak each April as Americans begin to file their taxes

Here’s how searches for OWS changed over time (see larger version): 

Here’s how that compares with the Tea Party, according to Google (see larger version): 

Read the full post for more explanation. And let me know if you find anything interesting using Google’s Insights for Search feature. 

Gallup: Cain Up. Perry Down.

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

I’m a bit shocked by this latest polling detail from Gallup about the GOP presidential field: 

The upward trend continues in Republicans’ ratings of presidential candidate Herman Cain, as does the downward trend in their ratings of Rick Perry. Cain’s Positive Intensity Score has increased to 34 among Republicans familiar with him, while Perry’s has dropped to 7 in Gallup’s latest update. Cain’s score is the best any candidate has registered during the campaign this year.

This chart shows how that score — the percentage of survey respondents with strongly favorable opinions of the candidates minus those with strongly negative opinions — has changed over time. Perry has dropped dramatically among Republicans who recognize him since Gallup began tracking him in July:

Meanwhile, Cain has steadily increased his name recognition among the GOP surveyed by Gallup: 

Download the data

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

Unemployment in the U.S.

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

No president since FDR has been re-elected with the unemployment rate above 7.2 percent, as The New York Times notes this morning:

Seventeen months before the next election, it is increasingly clear that President Obama must defy that trend to keep his job.

This interactive line chart, made with Google’s Public Data Explorer, visualizes the seasonally adjusted national unemployment rate since 1948. The rate peaked in 1982 at 10.8 percent. The lowest rate came in 1953: 2.5%. 

Here’s the view by state (click the play button to see changes over time):

DC vs. Austin Weather

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

I love Austin, but my biggest complaint about Texas’ capitol city is the oppressive summer heat. And when I say summer, I mean April to October. Today’s high temperature is forecast to be 98 degrees, for example. 

A pleasant surprise in my new city, Washington, D.C., is that I’m actually experiencing an extended spring, with average high temperatures in the lower 70s for the last several weeks. Today’s high is supposed to be 71 degrees. 

While it surely will be humid in D.C., I don’t expect 30-plus days above 100 degrees, which isn’t uncommon in Austin. Weather data reinforce my hope. This interactive line chart shows the average high temperatures in both places by month. Sorry, Austin. 

Made with Google Visualization API | Source: The Weather Channel

Data: [AustinD.C.]

Taxes in Context

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

A cool new tool for analyzing federal income tax burdens over time from Remapping Debate:

… [U]sers will be able to make a host of observations. Two that we’ve noted: the halving of the tax burden from 1945 to 2011 for a married couple with taxable income (in 2010 dollars) of $1,000,000 saves that couple more than $340,000 over the tax bill that they would have had to pay back in 1945. A similar percentage reduction in tax burden for a married couple with taxable income (in 2010 dollars) of $30,000 saves that working class couple only about $3,350 over the 1945 bill.

Built with Tableau Public 

Taiwan’s Economic Growth

By Matt Stiles | | Topics: Uncategorized

Elise and I returned yesterday from a 10-day trip to Taiwan, a country whose political status remains in dispute.

After a decade of rule by a political party that supported independence from China, the current government under president Ma Ying-jeou believes in greater cooperation between the two countries. Part of the reason that message resonated with voters is because Taiwan is no longer the economic powerhouse in Asia. Stronger ties to China could boost Taiwan’s economic fortunes, the argument went.

This simple line chart, built with Many Eyes, visualizes Taiwan’s economic growth rate from 1952 to 2008, when Ma took office. The country once enjoyed double-digit growth rates like those seen recently in China. In 1987, for example, the growth rate was 13 percent. No more. In 2008, the rate was less than one percent.  

View larger version | Source: Taiwan Statistical Data Book 2009