Friday, January 19, 2007

Visualizing the O'Hanlon Trend Data

Once we had the the data from Michael O'Hanlon's Senate Foreign Relations Committee Testimony (Jan 10, 2007) in readily reusable (RR) form, we opened that csv file with TLViz and were able to generate a set of graphs in a matter of minutes showing the individual trends in visual form including some that combined several of the metrics together.

You can see a pdf slide show of the entire set of charts we created in full screen size by clicking on: vizualizing-trends-ohanlon-testimony.pdf

Using Edward Tufte's idea of small multiples, we have combined 4 trends at a time into the pictures below (please click for full size) that show a sample of the charts from the full report.

The first 4 show US troops killed by IED, Iraq Civilian Fatalities, Multiple Fatality Bombings, and Estimated Strength of the Insurgency.

The next 4 trends show Estimated Strength of Shia Militias, Daily Average of Inter-ethnic attacks, Estimated Number of Foreign Fighters, and Number of Daily Attacks by Insurgents or Militias.

The next four small multiples show Iraqi Internally Displace, Iraq Refugees, Iraqi Physicians Murdered or Kidnapped, and Iraqi Physicians who have fled Iraq.

In this next set of trends, the first chart shows the total number of Iraqi Physicians who have murdered, kidnapped, or who have left Iraq. This chart was created by combining two of the originally reported trends. The second chart also combines two original trends, this time comparing the number of Iraqi forces who are technically proficient to the number who are politically dependable. The final two charts in the small multiple set show the Percentage of Household Fuel needs that are being met and the average hours per day of electricity in Baghdad.

This final small multiple set shows the Unemployment Rate, the Per Capita GDP, the Number of Trained Judges, and the Number of Telephone Subscribers.

If you click on these charts and then press F11, you should have a full screen readable version to examine. Of course, if you want to look at each chart by itself in full screen size with easy back and forth navigation, the vizualizing-trends-ohanlon-testimony.pdf is the place to go.

One of the advantages of these charts to the previous set of combined charts that we published is that they all cover the same time period and that makes understanding what they mean just that much easier. Once you understand what the X axis timeline means in one chart, you don't have to recompute that with each chart you examine.

Once again, we suggest that you download this RR data yourself and play with it to see what else you can find, what other patterns are hiding in the data. You can download by right clicking on ohanlon-key-factors.csv. We also suggest that this could be a fine opportunity for you to test out the ways in which TLViz simplifies and speeds up trend analysis work once you have RR data. You can learn more about TLViz from our earlier posts this month and you can download a copy of the full kit for Windows PC's from TrendsThatMatter's Download Page

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