[R] hist() and bar spacing

From: Amelie LESCROEL <lescroel_cebc_at_no-log.org>
Date: Thu 10 Aug 2006 - 18:59:25 EST


Hello,  

Could someone explain to me why I get so different histograms, in terms of bar spacing, depending on the number of counts entered ? (see example below)  

> test <- c(0,1,1,1,1,0,0,0,0,0,2,3,2,2,2,3,3,4,5,6,7,5,4,3,4,2,2)

> hist(test)
 

I obtain this kind of histogram (what I actually want), i.e. large bars with no space between them  

x

xx

xxx

xxxx

xxxxx

xxxxxx

xxxxxxx

xxxxxxxxx

xxxxxxxxxx  

Entering:

> test <-

c(3,1,2,1,1,1,2,1,1,2,2,2,0,1,1,1,3,0,0,2,5,2,0,0,1,6,0,1,1,4,0,0,2,1,0,1,3,
0,0,0,3,2,1,3,6,3,1,0,1,0,1,0,1,0,0,4,1,3,2,7,5,1,0,0,1,2,0,2,0,2,0,2,1,1,3,
1,3,0,2,1,3,1,1,0,1,7,2,1,2,2,2,1,2,5,1,2,2,2,1,1,4,2,0,4,1,1,1,5,1,0,2,5,2,
1,1,1,1,2,1,1,1,1,4,2,1,3,1,1,2,4,2,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,4,1,0,2,2,5,1,4,0,1,2,
2,2,2,1,2,1,3,5,2,0,0,2,0,0,0,0,1,1,2,2,1,1,2,1,0,1,0,2,1,3,0,0,0,1,3,1,3,1,
0,3,1,2,0,1,1,1,3,4,4,2,1,1,1,2,1,2,2,5,1,1,1,1,1,2,0,1,3,1,1,2,3,1,1,2,0,0,
2,0,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,5,3,1,1,1,0,0,1,0,1,1,0,0,1,2,0,0,0,2,3,1,1,1,2,0,0,
0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,1,1,2,0,1,0,0,0,1,3,0,1,3,1,2,1,1,2,1,1,3,1,1,1,0,0,
1,1,1,1,1,1,1,1,4,1,3,3,1,2,1,2,3,4,1,0,2,2,1,2,1,2,3,0,0,2,3,2,4,1,0,1,1,0,
1,3,2,3,3,1,3,1,0,2,1,1,1,1,1,1,3,0,0,1,1,1,1,1,1,3,1,3,3,0,1,2,1,2,3,1,2,1,
2,2,2,1,1,1,1,0,2,2,1,2,2,2,1,1,2,2,1,1,1,2,2,1,1,1)

> hist(test)
 

I obtain a strange histogram with the first 2 bars grouped together and then thin bars (not occupying the entire bin width) separated by spaces.  

  x

  x x

xx x

xx x x

xx x x x

xx x x x x

xx x x x x

xx x x x x x

xx x x x x x x

xx x x x x x x x x  

I suspect that it’s causing me some troubles to fit my data to a probability density function. Using:  

> plot(density(test))
 

I got a “wave-shaped” density line, with the line going down to zero between each bar. And I wouldn’t expect the density line to go down between each integer… or surely there is something that I don’t understand!  

Thanks for your help,  

Amélie Lescroël      

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