Thursday, August 15, 2019

The increasing popularity of ternary plots

The Guardian's Josh Holder visualizes ‘How a no-deal Brexit threatens your weekly food shop’. It's a neat scrollytelling experience (just an aside: I just remembered that Robert Kosara criticized this narrative technique, as he prefers steppers). The core element in Holder's story is this series of animated maps of imports and exports:

However, the most intriguing part for me is the following interactive ternary plot:

I'm a fan of of expanding readers's visual vocabulary by exposing them to novel and unusual graphic forms. That said, if we know that many people still struggle with two-variable scatter plots, I wonder how they'd react to the graphic above, and also whether textual clarifications may help in cases like this, or if they'd be too redundant.

UPDATE: Plotly's Nicolas Kruchten has shared this article about how ternary plots work.