I aim to model the temperature variations in two locations in America, example below:

RandData <- runif(8760*2)
America <- rep(c('NewYork','Miami'),each=8760)

Date = seq(from=as.POSIXct("1991-01-01 00:00"), 
           to=as.POSIXct("1991-12-31 23:00"), length=8760)

DatNew <- data.frame(Loc = America,
                    Doy = as.numeric(format(Date,format = "%j")),
                    Tod = as.numeric(format(Date,format = "%H")),
                    Temp = RandData)
mod1 <- gam(Temp ~ Loc + s(Doy) + s(Doy,by = Loc) +
  s(Tod) + s(Tod,by = Loc),data = DatNew)

plot(mod1,pages = 1, scale = 0)

Instead of having an output showing the component smooth functions that make up the gam I would like to plot the model output on the original x and y axis i.e. show the temperatures on the y axis. When modelling 1 location I would use something along the lines of:

pred <- data.frame(Doy = DatNew$Doy)
pred <- transform(pred, yhat = predict(mod1, newdata = pred))

However, I do not know how to achieve this if I have several locations i.e. the model depends on the location not solely on the day of year/time of day.

How can this be achieved?


2 Answers 2


@Kate when I run your code, I get the following error from the last line, which is the key to the solution:

Error in eval(expr, envir, enclos) : object 'Loc' not found In addition: Warning message: In predict.gam(mod1, newdata = pred) : not all required variables have been supplied in newdata!

If you want to predict from a model, any model not just gam(), you must provide all the variables in the dataframe to predict from (the argument newdata).

pred <- data.frame(Doy = 1:365,  Tod=median(DatNew$Tod),
predict(mod1, newdata = pred)

And this works giving a predicted value of temperature for each day of the year in New York, assuming that they are measured at the median time of day. I tweaked your Doy values to be simply from 1 to 365, as presumably you only want one prediction for each day of the year. The value is almost completely flat because you simulated the data with no effect of Doy on temp, and it is almost exactly the expected value for a uniform(0,1) distribution, which is how you generated your random temperatures.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for this. However, from this how can I obtain the same plots as plot(mod1,pages = 1, scale = 0) but with the new predicted values, i.e. altering the axis of the plot produced by gam? $\endgroup$
    – KatyB
    Commented Jul 3, 2012 at 16:13
  • $\begingroup$ @Kate I'm not sure what you mean by altering the axis - if you do plot(mod1) it shows you the component smooths without the intercepts, so the y-axis scale will be centered around 0. When you use predict(mod1, ...) you are getting all of the model, including the intercepts, combined in a single value. $\endgroup$
    – atiretoo
    Commented Jul 3, 2012 at 19:40

You might want

predvals <- predict(mod1, newdata = pred, type = "terms")

That returns a column for each smoother in the model such that each by gets its own column.

You can then plot each column individually as the y axis variable by adding on the the constant term:

lines(predvals[, i] + attr(predvals, "constant"), ....)

where i is the ith columns of predvals. You can also get standard errors for each smooth by adding se.fit to the predict() call. Then you will need to plot from the $fit component.

The constant term contains the overall mean of the entire data set normally, but as you have Loc it will be the mean of Temp for the reference location (i.e. that given by levels(Loc)[1]). Hence you will also need to adjust predvals[, i] not only by the constant term but also by the relevant coefficient (or effect) for Loc. There will be a column in predvals for each level of LOC (minus the reference level which is the constant term).


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