[R] combining bar and column graphs?

From: Me <notconfusedaboutthattoday_at_gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 11 May 2008 10:56:13 -0500

Hi, I'm hoping to find out whether R, or an R add-on, can generate a particular type of graph. And, more basically, whether such a type of graph even makes sense.

I'm looking for something resembling both a column chart and a bar chart, where the basic visual "unit" is a solid rectangle of color that can be extended either horizontally, vertically, or both. The data that needs to be graphed consists of the relative contributions of a number (6 or 8) of companies (entities, whatever) to a common fund, over the course of a number of years (say, 1990-2008). I'm picturing years on the X-axis, and dollar amounts on the Y-axis (say, $0-$100,000). From a "temporal" perspective, every year will have at least one contributor, starting with dollar zero, but some years will have multiple contributors. From a "company" perspective, some companies will contribute, e.g., dollars $1,001-$5,000 for several years running, visually forming a horizontal "block" riding on top of whatever happens to be below.

So as a simple example, between the years 2000 and 2001, Company A might inhabit a solid block extending from dollar zero to dollar 1000, two years wide. In year 2000, Company B might contribute dollars $1,001-$2,000, while right next door in year 2001, a different Company C might contribute dollars $1,001-$10,000.

Is it possible to have this sort of horizontal/vertical chart generated automatically, or is this impossible? Do I need to generate a year-on-year column graph and manually elide the boundaries between companies' contributions in successive years, thus forming the horizontal "blocks" I have in mind manually? Is there perhaps another software tool that would be good for this?

Thanks very much - this is a long question...

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