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March 08, 2010


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I'm also unsure as to whether the chart is observation or prediction. I saw the same chart at several news websites (e.g. ABC News Australia) before the tsunami waves had reached many of the areas on the map.

I hope people don't make more charts like this in R. The colors of the scale are not visually discernible beyond twenty. It is one of those horrible rainbow scales, that do not convey an increase in magnitude well, ...., yech.

But one can make good maps in R, look at the spatial ctv.

Not sure I agree, Nicholas. It seems likely that the colour-scale on that chart was histogram-normalised, good practice for showing detail at all scales. With a linear scale, you'd lose all the interesting detail currently shown in the yellows and greens. On the other hand, it does obscure what may be the most important feature: truly devastating waves (Chilen coast) versus merely large waves (Alaskan coast). But it all depends what the purpose of the graph was: to track the progression of the waves across the globe, or to identify the critical spots. This graph is clearly more suited to the former purpose.

Hmm, log2 intervals would probably linearize things better, even if labels are at the original scale, they should not be equally spaced. Also the scale is one showing increasing magnitude, I don't like the rainbow scale for that. Cartographer's have been complaining about that for a long time. But I think we agree one can do really cool figures in R, we are just arguing about execution.

Yes, on that we can definitely agree :)

From a layman's point of view, I feel maybe the Chilean quake contributed to the great Japan tsunami. If we read about these events from somewhere, somehow these events around the world are getting connected.

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