Business analytics


Non-Uniform Monash Business Analytics Team: This is a research working group consisting of facutly, post-docs and students in Econometrics and Business Statistics at Monash University. The group meets regularly to discuss current research and host visitors talking to the group. If you would like to visit and present your work to the group, send email

EDA at the UN

On Nov 10 I was part of a celebration of John W. Tukey at the United Nations. This event kicked off a new UN initiative called Unite Ideas. Details of the event, and the initiative can be found here. There were five talks relayed live to an audience of several thousand, using google hangouts and a youtube channel, and listeners could post questions using the Q/A tool. My talk was titled “An Exploratory Data Analysis of OECD’s 2012 PISA Survey”s and I delivered it by computer from my office in Iowa.

New version of nullabor package released

The new version of nullabor contains numerical measures that quantify how close the plot of the data is to the null plots in a lineup. It is very difficult to quantify all patterns that might be read from plots, so these should be taken in a spirit ofa Herculean task. The goal is to get some sense of what people are reacting to in a plot, which could be then associated with the text descriptions from people, or with data from an eyetracker.

How good is Nick Kygrios?

Nick Kygrios caught the world’s attention in July at Wimbledon 2014 when he beat world number 1 Rafael Nadal. After the match McEnroe commented: “We’ve been waiting for this for a while. We keep saying, `Who’s the next guy?‘, and I think we found that guy right now.” but Nadal seemed to beg to differ: “He has things, positive things, to be a good player. But everything is a little bit easier when you are arriving.

Facetted barcharts, and fluctuation diagrams are good alternatives to stacked barcharts

When there are two categorical variables it is common to make a stacked barchart. The stacked barchart primarily allows the reader to see the overall count, but it is harder to compare the counts of categories, the colored segments. Using data from the vcd package in R, here is an example. The data describes the responses of couples on questions about their sex life. This is a bar chart showing the husbands views, with his wifes’ views forming the stacking.