Scatter Plots & Contour Plots


    Course Description

    The other two important tools for data visualization are the scatter and contour plots. These two plots have the ability to present complex information in an easily understandable manner, thus making the data both presentable and comprehensible.

    What You'll Learn

     Introduction to scatter and contour plots

     Importance of scatter and contour plots in data visualization

    This completes our data mining series and you should now be ready to follow along at our Data Science Bootcamp.


    Another kind of plot that we use a lot is the scatter plot.

    We allow our attribute values to determine the position. We pick two attribute values and we plot the two values against each other for every data object. We can also use the size, shape, and color of our markers to display supplementary attributes. This allows us to construct three- or four-dimensional graphs on a two-dimensional plane very easily. And, in particular, we will see arrays of scatter plots used quite often as a way to compactly summarize our factor relationships.

    Here’s an example of that same iris data set and a scatter plot of the attributes. We’ve got every attribute plotted against the others. So, we’ve got sepal width and sepal length, and then sepal width and petal length, and then sepal width and petal width here. And the color and shape of our markers tell us what the species of the plant is. We can see, for instance, that sepal length and petal width - petal width in particular, if we look at the petal width row and column - seems to be a very good predictor for at least the setosa species.

    Other plots that we use a lot are contour plots, which we’ve seen before. Essentially, you can think of geographical maps here. We use contour plots for topographical maps all the time. So, in this case, we partition the plane into regions of similar values and color in those values, separating them with little contour lines to show the differences.

    All right. So that was a very, very fast blast through a number of different kinds of graphs. And that concludes our webinar on the fundamentals of data mining. Thank you for taking the time to watch this presentation. Please check out the next video in our introductory series, introduction to R.

    Have a nice day.


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