A histogram is a chart type that represents the frequency at which certain ranges of values appear in a DataSet. Histograms are most often used for statistical analysis.
In a histogram, two axes appear, one on the left side of the graph and one at the bottom. One of the axes is divided into ranges of values called "bins." The other axis measures the number of items in the DataSet that fall into each bin. For each bin, a bar is drawn that represents the number of items in the bin. In a vertical histogram, the axis with the bins appears on the bottom and the axis that measures the items appears on the left. In a horizontal histogram, these axes are switched.
The following example shows how a histogram works. This histogram represents the frequency at which specific height ranges appear in a group of students. The bottom axis shows the complete range of heights in the DataSet, with bins for individual ranges. The left axis measures the number of items–in this case, students–that fall into each bin.
Histograms require only two data columns or rows from your DataSet. One of the columns contains category names, and the other contains the associated values. Note that the category names themselves do not appear in the chart, but are counted and represented numerically. Also, values do not appear as is, but are converted into ranges in your chart. An optimal number of ranges (and hence, bins) is determined automatically, but you can change the default number of bins in Chart Properties. This is discussed later in this topic, in Customizing histograms.
For information about value, category, and series data, see Understanding Chart Data.
In the Analyzer, you choose the columns containing the data for your histogram. For more information about choosing data columns, see Applying DataSet Columns to Your Chart.
For more information about formatting charts in the Analyzer, see KPI Card Building Part 2: The Analyzer.
The following graphic shows you how data from a typical column-based spreadsheet is converted into a vertical histogram:
The following graphic shows you how data from a typical column-based spreadsheet is converted into a horizontal histogram:
You can customize the appearance of a histogram by editing its Chart Properties. Properties for all chart types are listed and described in Chart Properties. Unique properties of histograms include the following. You can click a thumbnail image to see a larger image.