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Jira Cloud: pie chart is almost useless

The current Jira Cloud pie chart doesn't show number or percent on the chart, which makes it almost useless. Can we please show this info?

1 comment

A pie chart is not something you use for definitive numbers - no-one reads a pie chart for a fraction of a percent.  A pie chart is there to give humans a visual idea of the proportions of the data, and to give us a clickable thing into the detail if we really do want to ask about the 0.0001% that doesn't seem quite right.

It's never going to show this, the point is that it gives us something broadly useful, not precise (and hence confusing)

If you like this sort of thing, check out the Tableau company blog when they first introduced Pie Charts. (May require hitting The Wayback Machine.)

The visualization expert Stanford Prof, one of the co-founding team introduced adding Pie Chats by going on about how Mostly Useless, Bad and Wrong they were. Kind of "We introduced Pie Charts because you insisted, but you really shouldn't use them for anything imporant."

V. funny.

I was trying not to say something like that - I find them particularly pointless myself, there's usually other, better options to show what I'm looking for.

Well, I went there for the both of us.<g>

That story is extra-ironic given Tableau's motto: "Telling Stories With Data." So, throwing up busy images you can't find a story in by trying is ... not that. (A graphic you have to explain has failed. A graphic they have to work to follow has failed. A graphic they have to go somewhere to find what they need has failed. Save the ink.)

True story: Some seniors showing off their name-brand "Data Science" program capstone project two springs ago had pie charts, nothing but pie charts in their show and tell poster session. And had heard nothing about graphic presentation for understanding. Looking at the presentation, I had to ask:

  • What (data) am I looking at?
  • What is this about?
  • What is this telling me?

If I have to work to figure that out, the graphic hasn't helped, has it? A good graphic, even if it's not a format they expect, will compellingly, obviously tell them what the data says, what they need to know from the data, and blow their mind with what that means, all at a glance.

For @Jie Kang if you're wanting to wrangle visual presentations to make them useful, get The Visual Display of Quantitiative Information, or anything else from Tufte.

Like Nic Brough _Adaptavist_ likes this


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