Gas prices have been pretty crazy lately. I'm not used to paying over $45 for a tank of gas in my fuel-efficient Honda Civic. I mean, come on, what the heck?
So naturally, we want to know, "What do the data look like for gasoline prices?" The Energy Information Administration has this data available for download. They have historic gas prices for certain states (not all, unfortunately) as well as for U.S. regions. Check out the animation showing the rise and fall... and rise.. and fall and rise of U.S. gas prices from 1993 up until now. Things started going crazy in 2006.
Is Animation the Best Visualization?
I could've just as easily plotted this data as time series - a line for each region and a colored line for the national average, but I already know how to do that, and I'm all about learning new stuff. Would a time series be any better than this animation? What about a map? If anyone wants a go at the data, here they are in a nice, clean spreadsheet.
UPDATE: Thanks Rob, Andy, and Jons for the versions in Many Eyes, Tableau, and Swivel. You all can probably guess where each graph came from: