[R] Graphics with moderately large amounts of data

Michael A. Miller mmiller3 at iupui.edu
Wed Dec 12 16:27:38 CET 2001

>>>>> "Frank," == Frank, Murray <murray.frank at commerce.ubc.ca> writes:

    > I am working with a moderately large data set -- the order
    > of magnitude is 180,000 observations by 50 variables. There
    > seem to be standard problems that I keep bumping into in
    > the graphics: eg. the graphics work hard to accomodate
    > outliers leaving the main action area a thick cloud, very
    > slow operations by R, etc. I have been doing some obvious
    > things to deal with these issues, eg. trimming, restricting
    > attention to data subsamples, etc.

I don't know of an appropriate FAQ to refer you to.  The issue of
outliers can be dealt with by setting the plotting limits with
xlim and ylim.  This might be faster than trimming the data set.

As far as graphics speed goes, a non-R possibility for faster
plotting of large data sets is root (http://root.cern.ch).
(Caveat: I've used root for large data sets (~10^6 measurements
of many parameters) and I have not used R for data sets larger
than several thousand measurements of a dozen or so parameters.
I have not made a direct comparison with large data sets - YMMV.)

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