Experiments with multiple dimensions
Blowing the whistle at bubble charts

Which software is responsible for this?

@guitarzan wants us to see this chart from north of the border, and read the comments. Please hold your nose first.



Here's one insightful comment: "I think it's insane to debate the ages 18 or 19. Why not cap it off at the much more rounded and sensible numbers 18.2 or 19.4??"

Reminds me of signs that say this elevator holds 13 people, or this auditorium holds 147 people safely.


I mean, which software package enables this chart?

For the vertical axis, it appears that the major gridlines are specified to 0.4 with minor gridlines at 0.2 apart. The lower limit of the vertical axis was specifically set to 17, which violates the start-at-zero rule for bar charts.

The software also allows the yx-axis labels to be printed twice, one in super tiny font in the expected locations, and the other turned sideways and printed into the bars.

And Canadians, please tell us why the provinces were ordered in this way.


This data calls for a simple map, with two colors.



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Not a Canadian, but the first 10 are in order from west to east.


Not even a map is required... The drinking age across Canada is 19 except in Alberta, Manitoba and Quebec, where it is 18 years old - Done!


It is photoshopped :P

Tom West

10 provinces west to east (i.e. the order they appear on the map), then the three territories west to east. It's the standard way of listing provinces/territories in Canada.


Here is how the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse itself displays these data (in a table, in alphabetical order):


dan l

This isn't even map worthy.


I laughed so hard at this. This is not a graph, this is a piece of art.

Alexander Mosquera

That is the dumbest graph I have ever seen.


Bar charts should never (yes never) start at anything other than zero. Length matters, and a non-zero axis screws up comparing lengths of the bar.

I imagine you could create this graph in any graphing software.


As was mentioned above the provinces, then the territories are listed from west to east. I have only seen this here and in the table of contents of a book on the best pubs in Canada from 2005. I suspect the author was from Lotusland.

It should be provinces from east to west and then territories east to west as we used to do it when I worked for the Federal Government.

In any case either way is superior to listing provinces alphabetically which is totally non-intuitive.


Yukon is west of NWT and Nunavut, isn't it?...Looks like provinces from west to east, then territories alphabetically. Nice.

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