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Are the new graphical statistics on the GMN any good?
Yeah, they rule!
63%
 63%  [ 70 ]
Doesn't really improve the newsletter, but doesn't hurt either
31%
 31%  [ 35 ]
They're really bad!
4%
 4%  [ 5 ]
Total Votes : 110

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KillerX
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 2:53 am    Post subject: [NEWS] February GMN Reply with quote

This forums thread is for discussion of the February issue of the Gentoo Monthly Newsletter. We hope you enjoyed reading it!

If you liked a certain article or felt that the GMN was published with something that we could do without, let us know. You can also put your comments and suggestions on how you think the next GMN should be.

There's also a poll on whether the new graphical stats are any good :)

Cheers,
Anant
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NathanZachary
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The graphical statistics are nice as they do organise the information in a readily observable manner. However, I think that the pie charts could use a little more contrast in the colour scheme. I understand that the scheme strictly follows that of the Gentoo site, and the GMN, but I believe that having a few stark colour contrasts might make the graphs easier to read. In either regard, the graphics are a nice, yet subtle, addition to the newsletter. :)
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rgk
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am glad to see that the GMN is actually manageable to release on on time.

The new graphical stats are awesome too :)

thanks for a great GMN
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Icer
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 5:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

++

Looks gr8t! Keep up the good work. :)
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arnvidr
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 7:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't received this....? I got the last issue, has something changed?

Reading it at www.gentoo.org, it looks good though!

Fixed the link, the forums get greedy with punctuation around URLs. -- desultory

edit: Got the e-mail now
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Eckos
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Love the issue. Keep up the good work. And don't take away the chart graphs or I'll do something *shakes fist* j/k. :lol:
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V-Li
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Eckos (only irrelavant parts stripped :) wrote:
I'll do something :lol:


How about contributing to the GMN. :P
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phajdan.jr
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Graphical stats about arches are really useful. It's just easier to compare visually than raw numbers. Pie charts - well, unless they would be category-divided, are not interesting for me.
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gentoo-dev
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Graphs look nice, but do not deliver as nice as plain text info. I liked the lists (make'em <ul> or <ol>) better than the table.
We used to have links to bugs.gentoo.org that gave the list of bugs, could we have them back please?

Nice to see the GMN published on time. Well done!
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d2_racing
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rgk wrote:
The new graphical stats are awesome too :)


Yeah, this is pretty impressive.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks to everyone who contributed in this GMN! Keep up the great work!

PS: I really like the graphics too :D
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steveL
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks great, well done :-)

One thing I'd love to see is a "Top 10 breakages" as voted on by forum users; for example, expat would have been in the chart for quite a while. That'd be a really useful resource for people about to do a major upgrade (especially if each linked to a forum how-to on getting round it.)

We could easily tie scripts into it as well, which would be an effective way for us to keep our systems stable without requiring dev time (apart from the initial setup of the voting and an RSS feed.)
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V-Li
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This would maybe better qualify in a sticky forums thread...but I consider the GMN not the right source for it. Go on and create it. :)
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kamil1
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:47 pm    Post subject: Page too wide Reply with quote

While the piecharts sure look fancy, they are too wide. As a result, the page with text is unreasonably stretched horizontally, making it uncomfortable to read.

Do you think you could make the charts a little narrower next time around?
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equaeghe
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 5:44 pm    Post subject: A note on so-called 'chart-junk' Reply with quote

Hi all,


Before I spotted this thread (my mistake), I sent a feedback e-mail to the GMN-editors.
I'm more-or-less reproducing this e-mail below.
The gist is that I argue against the graphical charts (at least for the data they are used for now):
they may look nice, but they are not effective in conveying content.

Even though they might look nice, pie-charts almost never are very efficient
conveying information; 3D-pie charts are even worse, as distortion is introduced
theat has absolutely no added information content. Usually, the information put
in pie-charts is much better presented in a table where a percentage is added.
So what I am suggesting is that the pie-charts (sorry) are removed, but that a
percentage column is added to the corresponding table.

The same remark holds for the bar-chart, but there a stable% per arch could be
added to the table.

Because the editors write

Quote:
Graphical bugzilla and package statistics is another feature we implemented,
don't forget to see the cool graphs and charts!


I know that my remark will be somewhat unwelcome. In this regard, note that I'm
not just stating my personal opinion, but am repeating what the experts say
(see, e.g., Tufte's books http://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/).
To convince yourself, put the table next to the pie/bar chart and try to get
some information out of them (what is the absolute/relative number of...): the
table will provide faster and accurate numbers, whereas the chart will require
one to work with estimates and do more work linking labels to numbers (pie
slices / lengths). One of the reasons is that tables present the (not really
very large amount of) numbers in a more structured way.

To look at it on the bright side: if the editors follow my suggestion, the GMN readers will
have better access to the numbers and at the same time the GMN editors will
probably have less work preparing the GMN.


Best regards,

Erik

P.S.: An instance where a graphical representation of data might be useful is
where a really large amount of data is presented in a relatively small space:
e.g., the evolution of the relative/absolute number of packages per arch could
be put in a plot containing daily data for multiple years.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:13 pm    Post subject: Re: A note on so-called 'chart-junk' Reply with quote

equaeghe wrote:
Even though they might look nice, pie-charts almost never are very efficient
conveying information; 3D-pie charts are even worse, as distortion is introduced
theat has absolutely no added information content. Usually, the information put
in pie-charts is much better presented in a table where a percentage is added.
So what I am suggesting is that the pie-charts (sorry) are removed, but that a
percentage column is added to the corresponding table.

I agree completely. Pie charts are only good for part-to-whole comparison and there is no excuse whatsoever for 3D pie charts.
Reading a book like "Show me the numbers" by Stephen Few should be mandatory for people that want to use graphs for visual presentation of numbers. "Visual Display of Quantitative Information" by Edward Tufte is another good book on the subject.

The bar chart Figure 6.1: Package distribution by keyword would be better sorted in descending order on the number of keyworded packages instead of alphabetic order of the arch names. And the contrast between the categories stable and testing is too low imho.
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steveL
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

V-Li wrote:
This would maybe better qualify in a sticky forums thread...but I consider the GMN not the right source for it. Go on and create it. :)

Heh the only ones I can think of right now are expat and apache-2 which are pretty old. Trouble with a forum thread is that it's reliant on the OP to maintain it, and also I don't see how the voting mechanism could work. I'll have a look on IRC later tonight for recent breakages though.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 7:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Looks great, well done :-)>>>>>>>>>


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Princess Nell
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with kamil1. Text formatting is the browser's job, but the fancy imagery just messes it up.

I always find it strange to see people use full-screen browser windows anyway (are they used
to low-res screens, maybe?), it's a waste of screen real estate, especially if one needs to keep
an eye or two on other things. Can't stand sites that effectively force full-screen.

Other than that, it's great to see the newsletter back.
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i92guboj
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice job in general.

I can understand why some people complain about the contrast on the graphs, though. Site layout is important, but presenting the info in a way that is legible for everyone is the first thing. Nice things are ok, but it is far more important to communicate the contents in a way that most persons can read easily without having to capture the hex code for the colors :P

But in general I think that it's not bad at all, much less for a second GMN.
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think4urs11
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nixnut wrote:
And the contrast between the categories stable and testing is too low imho.

Just wanted to write the same, so ++

other than that some graphs over timeline would be more interesting to see, e.g. number of devs/packets/bugs
maybe even some fancy stacked ones like number of bugs in total as 100% and split the stack between New/Closed/Not fixed/Marked Duplicate/Reopened to find some trends

oh and normally such graphs show top-10, not top-9
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NathanZachary
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 4:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think more important than the individual recommendations here is that people are reading the GMN and that it is a community issue. All of our recommendations regarding the pie charts and graphics rely on the prerequisite of having a community newsletter in the first place. The suggestions just affirm that people want to better the Gentoo world. :D
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:11 am    Post subject: GMN graphs Reply with quote

What was used to generate the nice graphs in the GMN? 8)
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mark_alec
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:36 am    Post subject: Re: GMN graphs Reply with quote

Kobboi wrote:
What was used to generate the nice graphs in the GMN? 8)
http://code.google.com/apis/chart/

Merged this post into the main February GMN one.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:13 am    Post subject: Indeed the GMN is better than ever ! Reply with quote

I'm just loving the overall layout of the GMN, the stats are wonderful, and so are the color theme they choose which is of course Gentoo's colors .
The information is well synthesized and structured, is easy readable and we don't get tired of reading.
So the for me the job is well done so far, lets just pray they keep on good vibes to do it right
month after month.

Best Regards

Safekali
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