What are Balanced Values?
Balanced values, whether in a heatmap, proportional map, or other data visualization, offer a powerful technique to ensure that data outliers do not overshadow essential information. This method involves the utilization of a logarithmic (log) scale, which effectively narrows the range of displayed values, allowing both small and large numbers to be visualized in a more balanced manner.
Understanding the Logarithmic Scale
A logarithmic scale is distinct from the traditional linear scale in its progression. Rather than advancing linearly, each increment on a logarithmic scale signifies a multiplication by a fixed factor, often 10. For instance, the sequence may include values such as 1, 10, 100, 1000, and so forth, as opposed to the linear sequence of 1, 2, 3, 4.
This scale transformation has the effect of compressing larger values and expanding smaller ones, making it particularly valuable when dealing with data that spans multiple orders of magnitude. Whether you are working with a heatmap, proportional map, or other data visualization, this approach ensures that the colors representing different values are not unduly influenced by a few extreme data points. The result is a more informative and balanced visualization that helps uncover meaningful insights from your data.