Archive for November, 2012

How American Spending Habits Change with Age

November 30, 2012
Plastic Dinnerware spending with age

Plastic Dinnerware Spending by Age

Spending on New Cars by Age

Spending on New Cars by Age


Spending habits change over a person’s life: people generally buy nicer and more expensive items as they get older. Following are some interesting highlights from The Atlantic’s thirty five graphs showing spending plotted against age. Click through any image to see the rest.

–from The Atlantic

Challenging Data for Global Temperatures

November 27, 2012


Data and chart from Economist makes it seem very likely that temperatures are going to increase.

A Visualization of Black Friday Prices

November 22, 2012

Rockets Fired Into Israel

November 21, 2012


A great summary from The Economist. Seems significant that number of rockets fired in 2012 is less than 2004, 2007 and 2008. Amazing that over 500 rockets are fired per year from Gaza into Israel. Is that right?

Housing Slowly Coming Back

November 21, 2012


Housing slowly making its way back in this chart and summary from The Economist.

James Bond by the Numbers

November 21, 2012

This chart shows the number of kills, martinis, and evening adventures of every Bond. Does not include Skyfall.

–from The Economist

World Wild Fish Catch and Farmed Fish Production

November 19, 2012


Nice overview from Earth Policy Institute of the global fish picture, including context for the wild vs. farmed perspective. Wild seems holding steady, but farmed growing dramatically. What this doesn’t show is wild fish stocks as well as the “sustainability” of farmed fish production.

The Fiscal Cliff Explained

November 15, 2012

This diagram explains all the cuts and tax increases that are part of the so-called fiscal cliff.



Labor Picture Remains Challenging

November 13, 2012



Two pictures of the US labor situation and why it remains challenging. First, from Colin Gordon at University of Iowa, chart showing upward long term trend of both mean duration of unemployment (weeks), as well as unemployment insurance exhaustion (%). See also also article from Center for American Progress. Second, chart of labor force participation, showing long term trend of more people opting out of the workforce.

San Francisco Voting Results

November 9, 2012

Not surprising that San Francisco voted overwhelmingly for Obama, although the magnitude for Obama was significant at 83%.  I wonder if there are any other cities or counties in America that voted as overwhelmingly for Obama.  I also wonder which cities or counties voted most overwhelmingly for Romney.

Also of interest was turnout in San Francisco at 56%, which seems low to me.  We are looking into historical turnout nationwide and how it compares to the recent election.  Almost half of those who voted in San Francisco did so by mail, which seems like a big number and I’m curious as to how that compares to the past.  My sense (unconfirmed) is that vote-by-mail has been increasing, which is unusual given my other suspicion (mostly unconfirmed) that snail mail has been losing share to e-mail in the last 15 years.  I think likely that the voters who prefer vote-by-mail to physically going to a polling station would prefer online voting even more so, but online voting is not available.

Follow up #1:  Politico has a great site with election information by county.  I looked at one state and found a number of lop-sided counties for Romney, but was also interested to find a number of lop-sided counties for Obama in Alabama.