MATLAB Answers

sort boxplot based on 25-75th percentiles

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Hi all,
I have a figure with 3 boxplots in it (different colors each of them)
However, I would like to sort them based on the difference between 25th-75th percentile.
Is it possible to do it?
And if yes can I keep the initial colours after they have been sorted?
thanks a lot
NIkolas

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Accepted Answer

the cyclist
the cyclist on 27 Jun 2020
Yes, it is possible. The algorithm would be something like
  • Find the percentiles on the data, using the prctile command, before plotting them with boxplot
  • Sort those percentiles, and store the sorting order
  • Use a grouping variable (the second argument to the boxplot command), making sure that the grouping variable values are sorted according to the correct order
I could probably give more specific advice if you upload the data and code that you are using now.

  3 Comments

Nikolas Spiliopoulos
Nikolas Spiliopoulos on 28 Jun 2020
Hi again,
thanks for the answer
here is a simple example, where I have 9 bars in one figure with 3 different colours.
I don't fully unterstand how I sort them
thanks again
A=[rand(50,1) 2*rand(50,1) 3.5 *rand(50,1) 1.8*rand(50,1) 0.7*rand(50,1) 0.5*rand(50,1) 4*rand(50,1) 3.1*rand(50,1) 7*rand(50,1)]; %Random matrix
figure(01)
g=boxplot(A);
set(g(5,1:3), 'Color', 'r');
set(g(5,4:6), 'Color', 'b');
set(g(5,7:9), 'Color', 'g');
the cyclist
the cyclist on 28 Jun 2020
I think this does what you want. You want the colors of the box plots to be retained from the original, unsorted boxplot, right?
A=[rand(50,1) 2*rand(50,1) 3.5 *rand(50,1) 1.8*rand(50,1) 0.7*rand(50,1) 0.5*rand(50,1) 4*rand(50,1) 3.1*rand(50,1) 7*rand(50,1)]; %Random matrix
p25 = prctile(A,25);
p75 = prctile(A,75);
[~,sortingOrder] = sort(p75-p25);
[~,unsortingOrder] = sort(sortingOrder);
sortedA = A(:,sortingOrder);
figure
g=boxplot(sortedA);
set(g(5,unsortingOrder(1:3)), 'Color', 'r');
set(g(5,unsortingOrder(4:6)), 'Color', 'b');
set(g(5,unsortingOrder(7:9)), 'Color', 'g');
Nikolas Spiliopoulos
Nikolas Spiliopoulos on 28 Jun 2020
Thanks a lot,
that's exactly what I need
cheers!!

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