CoolData blog

8 December 2009

Cool motion charts – Part 2

Filed under: Data visualization, Free stuff — Tags: , , , , — kevinmacdonell @ 7:43 pm

In my previous post, Cool motion charts – Part 1, I talked about a Google Gadget which allows you to make a motion chart based on a spreadsheet of data you create in Google Docs. Now I will show you a live example I created. In Part 3, I will go into more detail about how you can create your own.

WordPress does not allow embedding of scripts, and Google Gadgets are scripts, so you’ll have to click on the link below to view the motion chart. The spreadsheet will open in a separate tab or window. Click on the “Motion Chart” tab at the lower left, then wait a moment for the chart to build.

(See note at bottom of this post for some caveats related to this data.)

Motion chart, "20 years of alumni giving". (Click to access.)

When you click the Play button in the lower left-hand corner, the animation runs from fiscal years 1989 through 2009. At any time you may click and drag on the time scale to control the year being displayed. Animation speed control is to the right of the Play button.

Each circle represents a class decade (1930s to 2000s). The size of the circle corresponds to the number of alumni, living and deceased. Click on any circle to highlight that decade. (Click on ‘Trails’ to record how it moved over time.)

The vertical axis is Median Gift for that fiscal year. I used median instead of mean (average) to avoid huge swings due to the influence of large outlier gifts.

The horizontal axis is Percentage Participation for that fiscal year. I just noticed that the gadget has converted all my percentages to decimals, as in 20% = 0.20. (If you click on % Participation, you have the option of changing the view to Number of Donors. Those are the only two views that make any sense.)

It took a lot longer to prepare the data for the spreadsheet than it did to produce the chart. Click on: Part 3 (data preparation) to continue!

[Note on data: Actual donor participation figures we have published are higher than this chart suggests, as multi-alumni households (which are common for our institution) are counted here as a single donor when gifts are not split. As well, giving figures include both annual and campaign gifts, but exclude student giving (via union fees), estate giving, and all other non-alumni giving.]

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1 Comment »

  1. […] I offer more detailed instructions in Part Two. […]

    Pingback by Cool motion charts – Part 1 « CoolData blog — 9 December 2009 @ 11:28 am


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