Seeking solace in data

Posted to Statistics  |  Tags: , ,  |  Nathan Yau

I think many of us can relate to this during the odd election cycle. Marcus Wohlsen for Wired describes the constant visits and refreshes to FiveThirtyEight for new polls and projections.

Evan is a poll obsessive, FiveThirtyEight strain—a subspecies I recognize because I’m one of them, too. When he wakes up in the morning, he doesn’t shower or eat breakfast before checking the Nate Silver-founded site’s presidential election forecast (sounds about right). He keeps a tab open to FiveThirtyEight’s latest poll list; a new poll means new odds in the forecast (yup). He get push alerts on his phone when the forecast changes (check). He follows the 538 Forecast Bot, a Twitter account that tweets every time the forecast changes (same). In all, Evan says he checks in hourly, at least while he’s awake (I plead the Fifth).

This was me for a while, and no matter what the forecasts say, I never feel good about what I see. Because there’s always a chance.


Watching the growth of Walmart – now with 100% more Sam’s Club

The ever so popular Walmart growth map gets an update, and yes, it still looks like a wildfire. Sam’s Club follows soon after, although not nearly as vigorously.

19 Maps That Will Blow Your Mind and Change the Way You See the World. Top All-time. You Won’t Believe Your Eyes. Watch.

Many lists of maps promise to change the way you see the world, but this one actually does.

Life expectancy changes

The data goes back to 1960 and up to the most current estimates for 2009. Each line represents a country.

Jobs Charted by State and Salary

Jobs and pay can vary a lot depending on where you live, based on 2013 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Here’s an interactive to look.