Essential Graphing > Bubble Plots
Publication date: 04/12/2021

Bubble Plots

View Patterns in Multidimensional Data Using Bubble Plots

A bubble plot is a scatterplot that represents its points as circles, or bubbles. Bubble plots can be dynamic (animated over time) or static (fixed bubbles that do not move). Use bubble plots to:

dynamically animate bubbles using a time variable, to see patterns and movement across time

use size and color to clearly distinguish between different variables

aggregate data (rows) into a single bubble, simplifying the bubble plot

Because you can see up to five dimensions at once (x position, y position, size, color, and time), bubble plots can produce dramatic visualizations and readily show patterns and trends.

Note: Dynamic bubble plots were pioneered by Hans Rosling, Professor of International Health, Karolinska Institutet, and the people involved in the project.

Figure 5.1 Example of a Bubble Plot 

Example of a Bubble Plot


Example of a Dynamic Bubble Plot

Launch the Bubble Plot Platform

Specifying Two ID Variables
Specifying a Time Variable

Interact with the Bubble Plot

Control Animation for Dynamic Bubble Plots
Select Bubbles
Use the Brush Tool

Bubble Plot Platform Options

Show Roles

Additional Examples of the Bubble Plot Platform

Example of Specifying Only a Time Variable
Example of Specifying Only ID Variables and Splitting a Bubble
Example of a Static Bubble Plot
Example of a Bubble Plot with a Categorical Y Variable
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