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PSu

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Posts: 32
Reply with quote  #1 

The bullet graph indeed is a space-efficient and more informative alternative for the useless gauges that we see too often. 

 

Bullet graphs can be made in Excel with a stacked bar (or column), combined with a normal bar (using a secondary axis for the normal bar which later is hidden).  The bar can have a conditional colour, i.e. determined by the value and coloured automatically (e.g., changing to red to flag severe underperfomance in appropriate cases).  The target line is also a stacked bar with a negligible height.  

The target line can be black, but also red or any other signal value.  Moreover, other critical limit value lines can be added (even using different colours or shades).  I personally like adding a value label to support easier reading, especially when more bars are used.

 

I wonder, however, whether the name "bullet graph" is the right label.  I recall Stephen rejected "Performance Bar".  But would "Progress Bar" not be a more descriptive name for this wonderful invention?

 

Have fun,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Henk

sfew

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Reply with quote  #2 
Henk,

Nicely done. A former student of mine at UC Berkeley created bullet graphs in Excel using a similar approach.

Regarding the name "bullet graph", unfortunately I was under pressure to come up with a name in a single day due to the deadline of a colleague who was refering to these graphs in a book that was going to press. This name now appears too many places to change easily, so "bullet graph" it is. To quote Shakespeare: "A bullet graph by any other name would communicate as sweet."

Steve


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Stephen Few
PSu

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Reply with quote  #3 

Ok, bullet graph it is!

 


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Henk
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