In this chapter we’ll get you into the right frame of mind for developing meaningful visualizations with R. You’ll understand that as a communications tool, visualizations require you to think about your audience first. You’ll also be introduced to the basics of ggplot2 - the 7 different grammatical elements (layers) and aesthetic mappings.
Aesthetic mappings are the cornerstone of the grammar of graphics plotting concept. This is where the magic happens - converting continuous and categorical data into visual scales that provide access to a large amount of information in a very short time. In this chapter you’ll understand how to choose the best aesthetic mappings for your data.
A plot’s geometry dictates what visual elements will be used. In this chapter, we’ll familiarize you with the geometries used in the three most common plot types you’ll encounter - scatter plots, bar charts and line plots. We’ll look at a variety of different ways to construct these plots.
In this chapter, we’ll explore how understanding the structure of your data makes data visualization much easier. Plus, it’s time to make our plots pretty. This is the last step in the data viz process. The Themes layer will enable you to make publication quality plots directly in R. In the next course we'll look at some extra layers to add more variables to your plots.