I noticed that some users on SO only ask questions while hardly answering anything, whereas others do most of the answering. I wondered what the balance between these user types looked like. For example, would the most active users be doing most of the answering? Would the less active users be those who come in only when they have a question? Such information might give some insight into the "healthiness" of the community.
With the April 2010 data dump and some Python code (below), I came up with the following plot:
Each point represents a user; the location of the point corresponds to the number of questions and answers written by that user. Where multiple points coincided, they have been merged into a bigger point. Note that one user, presumably "unknown (google)", fell way outside the plot range, so I removed him.
I'm not quite happy with the result; the graph is not as informative as I'd hoped. Any ideas for improvement?
cat posts.xml | python count.py | python plot.py
Output will be written to a file