Data Visualization for React Developers

Pie Charts: Do's and Don't's

Shirley Wu

Shirley Wu

Data Sketches
Data Visualization for React Developers

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The "Pie Charts: Do's and Don't's" Lesson is part of the full, Data Visualization for React Developers course featured in this preview video. Here's what you'd learn in this lesson:

Shirley covers what a pie chart can show effectively with data, and when to avoid them.


Transcript from the "Pie Charts: Do's and Don't's" Lesson

>> Shirley Wu: And finally, we weren't going to talk about basic charts without talking about pie charts. [LAUGH] Pie charts get a lot of hate. People are like never use pie charts! There is very specific use cases for pie charts. They are really good visualizations. It's like don't use pie charts for most of the times except for asterisk, the best for these parts.

Pie charts are for hierarchical comparing part to whole. Again, Datawrapper has a really great article about when to use and how to best improve a pie chart, so please check that out. This is basically just a little bit of their article. They're best for when your values are around 25%, 30% or 75%.

And they're best for if you're only trying to show three or four parts, three or four slices. Any less, if you have one or two, then you don't need a pie chart. Any more than four makes it hard to see the thinner slices and what you're trying to get across with the thinner slices.

They're not good for, like I said, comparing fine differences, and they're not good for if you have multiple totals. If you're trying to show multiple pie charts next to each other for whatever reason, they're really not good for that. The Datawrapper article will talk about better alternatives for those situations.

So that was a really quick run through of basic chart types.

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