Available chart types

This reference section describes the many chart types supported. The table below describes the available charts.

Type

Description

2-D line chart

Two-dimensional charts describe data using X and Y axes. Most charts are two-dimensional since the format conveys information simply and clearly. Once you have chosen to show your information as a two-dimensional chart, you can select one of these formats to showcase what you want to communicate about your information.

3-D bar chart

Three-dimensional charts can show more data than 2-dimensional charts because of the added dimension of depth. Where a 2-dimensional bar chart can show the progress of one value over time, a 3-dimensional bar chart can show the progress of many values over time, compared to each other.

For more information about types of 3-dimensional charts, you can read about 2-dimensional charts and note that the 3-D versions are the same things, only with the dimension of depth to allow for wider comparisons

Area chart

Use area charts to emphasize the relative importance of values over a period of time. An area chart focuses on change in magnitude rather than rate of change. By displaying the sum of the plotted values, an area chart also shows the relationship of parts to a whole. Each filled-area on the chart represents a series and is identified by a different color or pattern. Values are plotted on the vertical (Y) axis and time is plotted on the horizontal (X) axis.

You can also chart one or more series against the secondary Y axis instead of the primary axis.

Bar chart

Use bar charts to compare items that do not show trends.

High-low chart

Use to plot changes in the range of values of a data item over time.

Line chart

Use line charts, also known as graphs, to show trends or changes in data over a period of time. These charts emphasize time flow and rate of change rather than amount of change.

In 2D line charts, values are plotted along the vertical (Y) axis and time is shown on the horizontal (X) axis. In 3D charts, values are plotted on the vertical (Y) axis, time is plotted on the horizontal (X) axis, and the depth on the (Z) axis.

Linear regression

The Linear Regression chart displays the line of best fit of the data for the time frame selected. To perform a capacity planning scenario, the results of the linear regression must be projected into the future. To accomplish this, select the calendar button and type the appropriate ending time frame and the time period to perform the chart, for example, monthly, yearly, and so on. Information used in this manner is based strictly on history data and modeling the data in a linear manner.

Pareto

Use to identify the most important factor among a typically large set of factors. A Pareto chart is a special type of bar chart where the values being plotted are arranged in descending order. The graph is accompanied by a line graph which shows the cumulative totals of each category, left to right.

Pie chart

Use to plot the relative values (expressed in percentage or area) of a family of items within the whole.

Polar chart

Use to plot data values represented as distances or angles from a central point. The X variable is plotted on the angular axis. The Y variable is charted on the radial axis, with the origin at the center of the circle. Also called a radar chart.

Scatter plot

Scatter charts show the relationship between paired data sets and are useful for identifying patterns between two factors. For example, a scatter chart might show that high queue level alerts are associated with queue service interval.

The lack of lines connecting the data points makes it possible to see clusters and trends.

X-bar and range

This type of chart is used to show whether a process is stable or unstable. There are 3 lines: an upper control limit (UCL), a lower control limit (LCL) and a nominal.

You want the data to be uniformly distributed inside the control limits around the nominal.

If any data points fall outside the UCL or LCL, you have an unstable process. If a series of consecutive data points is between the nominal and one of the control limits, you have a "run" which is also unstable. You can also see if the data tends to climb or forms cycles by looking at these charts.

For example, by analyzing the history of a current queue depth using an x-bar and range chart, you can determine if the depth is a stable process.

X-bar and sigma charts are control charts for variable data (data that is both quantitative and continuous in measurement, such as a measured dimension or time). The x-bar portion monitors the process location over time, based on the average of a series of observations, called a subgroup. The sigma portion monitors the variation between observations in the subgroup over time.

X-bar and sigma

Use with processes that have a subgroup size of 11 or more, X-bar and sigma charts show if a system is stable and predictable.

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