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Bubble Chart

Plot your numeric data with X and Y coordinates to easily depict components in a two-dimensional space.

Kristine Marhilevica avatar
Written by Kristine Marhilevica
Updated over a week ago

A bubble chart helps the viewer to visualize components in a two-dimensional space. The bubbles are positioned based on numeric fields that represent the X and Y coordinates. If desired, a third numeric field can be selected as the bubble size.

Ardoq bubble chart


To use the bubble chart in Ardoq, open a workspace containing components with numeric fields. Use the field choosers in the toolbar to select which numeric fields to use as the bubbles' X, Y, and Radius values.

A bubble chart will be displayed based on those fields.

Ardoq bubble chart fields

Changing Context

Different sets of components can be displayed by changing the context in the navigation tree on the left side of the window. When a component with children is selected as the context, its children will be displayed. Otherwise, the component's "siblings" will be displayed. If the component in context is under the workspace root, then all components in the workspace root will be displayed.

In the event that there are no components with valid X and Y values, then the chart will search for valid components deeper in the component hierarchy, and display components at the level where valid components were found.

To view all the components in a workspace, or all components descending from the component in context, toggle the "Include all descendants" button in the view settings toolbar.

The component in context will be highlighted in the bubble chart. Clicking a bubble will also change the context, which will be reflected in the navigation tree.

Ardoq bubble chart component


Bubbles are colored according to the style settings of the component, which can come from its individual style settings, or from the style settings of its type in the model. To apply color based on other criteria, use conditional formatting, which can be configured in the Perspectives window.

Ardoq bubble chart coloring


The bubble chart supports three background styles: None, Grid, TIME, and Custom. This setting is configured using the chooser dropdown in the toolbar.

Ardoq bubble chart backgrounds

None and Grid simply determine whether or not to show gridlines behind the bubbles. TIME is a specialized mode that represents the TIME model.

TIME is an acronym for Tolerate/Invest/Migrate/Eliminate. When TIME is selected as the background style, the X and Y axes will range from 1 to 5, quadrant lines will be drawn at the midpoints of each axis, and labels will appear in each quadrant. In a standard TIME bubble chart, the axes measure business value and technical fit. These two measures place each item in a quadrant, thereby associating it with a business decision.

The X and Y fields do not have to represent the business value and technical fit. You can plot any number field in the TIME chart, as long as that field contains values between 1 and 5.

Ardoq TIME chart

When the background is set to Custom, the chart pops up a dialogue with options for axis ranges and quadrant labels. Here, you can define your own rules to get a layout similar to TIME mode. The quadrant lines will always be drawn at the midpoint between the X and Y-axis minimum and maximum. Type a number in the input fields to define the axis minimum and maximum, or leave them empty to automatically calculate the minimum and maximum based on the data in context.

Ardoq custom quadrants

Anti-Collision Labeling

It is common to try to display many bubbles in one chart, and displaying dozens or hundreds of labels in a small space can be a problem. Fortunately, the Ardoq bubble chart provides a solution. Labels will be rearranged to prevent overlaps. The label font will be scaled proportionally to its bubble. If more than 100 bubbles are present, only the largest 100 will be labeled. Also, if the identity of a bubble is unclear, the user can hover the mouse over it to show the label in a tooltip.

Ardoq anti-collision labelling
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