Achieve Charting Zen With TauCharts

There was some chatter on the twitters this week about a relatively new D3-based charting library called TauCharts (also @taucharts). The API looked pretty clean and robust, so I started working on an htmlwidget for it and was quickly joined by the Widget Master himself, @timelyportfolio.

TauCharts definitely has a “grammar of graphics” feel about it and the default aesthetics are super-nifty While the developers are actively adding new features and “geoms”, the core points (think scatterplot), lines and bars (including horizontal bars!) geoms are quite robust and definitely ready for your dashboards.

Between the two of us, we have a substantial part of the charting library API covered. I think the only major thing left unimplemented is composite charts (i.e. lines + bars + points on the same chart) and some minor tweaks around the edges.

While you can find it on github and do the normal:


or, even use the official initial release version:


I’ll use the dev version:


for the example below, mostly since it includes the data set I want to use to mimic the current, featured example on the TauCharts homepage and also has full documentation with examples.

Here’s all it takes to make a faceted scatterplot with:

  • interactive tooltips
  • interactive legend
  • custom-selectable trendline annotation:
tauchart(cars_data) %>% 
  tau_point("milespergallon", c("class", "price"), color="class") %>% 
  tau_guide_padding(bottom=300) %>% 
  tau_legend() %>% 
  tau_trendline() %>% 
  tau_tooltip(c("vehicle", "year", "class", "price", "milespergallon"))

Hybrid cars fuel economy by price and class
It seems expensive cars are less efficient.

There are tons more examples in the TauCharts RPub (and soon-to-be vignette) and @timelyportfolio will be featuring it in his weekly widget update.

Two New R Packages – qrencoder & passwordrandom

Believe it or not, there are two [1] [2] questions on @StackOverflowR about how to make QR codes in R. I personally think QR codes are kinda hokey, but who am I to argue with pressing needs of the #rstats community? I found libqrencode and it’s highly brew-able and apt-able (probably yum-able, too, if you lean that way), so it was super-easy to crank out an Rcpp-based package for it.

There are a few functions in the package, but the following would be my guess as to how most folks would use it (well, two folks, anyway):

      asp=1, col=c("white", "black"), axes=FALSE, 
      xlab="", ylab="")


Since @quominus threw down yet-another gauntlet (in our own “battle of the hoRnbuRg”) after my qrencoder announcement:

I had no choice but to also crank out another package that interfaces with the PasswordRandom API. There’s at least some fairly obvious real utility to this one:

# current verison
#> [1] ''
#>  [1] "m" "M" "Z" "p" "G" "B" "E" "m" "B" "v"
#>  [1] 82.6272 89.6146  1.2591 77.9003 62.5740 68.8216 61.9789 37.9001 20.6352  4.6343
#>  [1] "fdf5d58e-ebe9-4db3-b429-303e8a5e1fdf" "20ad94f9-a232-4fa8-91c6-ba21e9925b96"
#>  [3] "d44c1c4b-0117-43c3-b77c-89bc33caf59f" "500ce633-1197-4c92-aff4-1eac94fd2d8d"
#>  [5] "13b1a1a0-f7fa-40b6-a9da-9e445ac26d2b" "06362286-8d5b-4dfc-9283-df564291120d"
#>  [7] "36dbb258-ede0-4a8a-b416-5609f11c8be1" "9b27dcca-26d7-4467-9a54-3862ccbd06cf"
#>  [9] "4f53fe11-d4f0-4c01-a2fc-97e35983d567" "b1f0df88-e790-4d48-8683-ebe68db9f0ca"
#>  [1] 82 17 97 20 87 91 57 42 22 62
#>  [1] "RoeXO2{75bh"  "RiuFE6'10hj"  "TauTY1)92pj"  "XooHO8%87rv"  "MooJA1^40np"  "KyaDU3\\35tr" "KiaQY0>91nr" 
#>  [8] "XoeGO1%68nt"  "KeoFI0>33cc"  "VeaDI2$51jc"

If you’re so inclined, kick the tyres of either/both and drop a note here or issue/feature request on either repo.