Symbols-based Unit Charts to Show Counts in R

Add visual weight by using individual items to show counts.

While a bar chart is the most straightforward visualization method, it can be useful to show individual units to make the data more accessible or relatable. Using a symbol for each count can add weight to the things or people the symbols represent.

In this tutorial, you learn how to replace bars in a bar chart with individual symbols stacked on each other.

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About the Author

Nathan Yau is a statistician who works primarily with visualization. He earned his PhD in statistics from UCLA, is the author of two best-selling books — Data Points and Visualize This — and runs FlowingData. Introvert. Likes food. Likes beer.