Wednesday, July 24, 2019

'What If?' visualization

FiveThirtyEight's Ella Koeze wonders How 13 Rejected States Would Have Changed The Electoral College. The result is an example of what we could call 'What If? visualization', and that is related to what I wrote in this post about the 'me' layer. Koeze explains:
Our current state borders are fairly arbitrary. Throughout American history, people have been proposing new states, but most don't appear on the map today, either because they once existed but were later redrawn, or because they simply never caught on. But what if some of these would-be states were around today? Would moving those state borders, without changing any votes, change our political reality?

FiveThirtyEight is quite fond of this kind of alternative-scenario visualizations and simulators. These are some of my favorites: The Atlas of Redistricting, Should You Get Married (or Divorced) for Tax Reasons, and Hack Your Way To Scientific Glory, which allows you to p-hack like a pro.