Some visualizations and tables are, in the Displayr internals, calculations. This article discusses how:
- Outputs that are based on calculations are slower
- How to identify which tables and visualizations are calculations
- Advantages of visualizations that are calculations
- The future - we are deprecating visualizations that are calculations
Outputs that are based on calculations are slower
The Visualization below is created using Visualization > Bar > Small Multiples Bar. In Displayr's internals, this Visualization has been created as a calculation. The dependency graph below shows that it takes 2.78 seconds to compute. In reality, it can sometimes be slower. This is because it uses more resources on your browser, and the browser time isn't included in the dependency graph.
The Visualization below was created using Visualization> Bar > Bar Crosstab. In Displayr's internals, this Visualization has not been created as a calculation. It takes 0 seconds to compute. And it will be less affected by browser slowness.
How to identify which tables and visualizations are calculations
The most accurate way of determining if a table or Visualization is a calculation is to:
- Create the Visualization.
- Selecting the output and going to the object inspector > Properties > R CODE. If you can see the R CODE menu, then the Visualization is a calculation.
However, two shortcuts are:
- Typically if there are two visualizations with similar names, for example, Bar and Bar with Tests, the one that says with Tests is not a calculation, but the one that doesn't say with Tests is a calculation.
- If you can click on an output (e.g., table) and modify things that you click on (e.g. data cell), rather than having to perform all modifications in the object inspector, it's typically not a calculation.
Advantages of visualizations that are calculations
Visualizations are popular despite their slowness, as they are more:
- They are likely to have hover effects, making them better for dashboards.
The future - we are deprecating visualizations that are calculations
We are currently replacing calculation-based visualizations with visualizations that are:
- Can be modified by clicking on them.
- Are heavily customizable.
- Are pretty.
This project has been underway for a few years, and we expect to release a slew of improved visualizations in the second half of 2022.