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What is Spiral Plot in Data Visualization?

Spiral Plots are ideal for showing large data sets, usually to show trends over a large time period. This makes Spiral Plots great for displaying periodic patterns.

This type of visualisation plots time-based data along an Archimedean spiral. The graph begins at the centre of a spiral and then progresses outwards. Spiral Plots are versatile and can use bars, lines or points to be displayed along the spiral path.

Colour can be assigned to each period to break them up and to allow some comparison between each period. So for example, if we were to show data over a year, we could assign a colour for each month on the graph.

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Papers on the development of Spiral Plots:

Interactive Visualization of Serial Periodic Data – John V. Carlis and Joseph A. Konstan (1998)

Visualizing Time-Series on Spirals, Marc Weber, Marc Alexa and Wolfgang Müller (2001)

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