Swivel: Open Source Analytics — Geek Recreation (eg: $/gallon Gasoline versus $/pound Coffee)
Posted by danspira
For all you data geeks out there, Swivel is the new heaven on earth… and for everyone else, it’s just really cool. The Swivel website is one of the most inventive “Web 2.0 concept” implementations to date. Here’s is a quick chart I whipped up in just a few minutes, comparing retail gasoline and coffee prices in the U.S.:
DOWNSIDE: The usability of the site isn’t always as good as one would expect, and the “bling” function for graphs (aka, “chart junk” a la Edward Tufte) is somewhat limited. Source data isn’t always attributed, no function for peer validation of data sources.
UPSIDE: Are you kidding me? The glass is 85% full. It’s growing like gangbusters and sure to improve. If the site functionality doesn’t let you do what you want to do, you can always just download the charts and play with the source data yourself… if you’re into that sort of thing.
Blog Entry on “Black Gold” Oil Documentary
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BBC Article (1.17.01) featuring an Oil vs Coffee graph:
Swivel Data: Cost of Misc Liquids per Gallon