Visualising the Olympics

by Alex Muntus

As part of dashboard week at the data school, we were given a data set with olympic medals from 1972 to 2014. This was great practice to work on our dashboard design, bringing together lots of elements using a simple understandable dataset. This is also on tableau public – along with the vizzing two numbers dashboard so you can checkout the functionality.

In the below, users can click on a country and see how they have performed or click on an event and see how the various countries got on at that event.

Andy Kriebel had given us a talk on effective use of colour and so I was keen to incorporate this into the viz. First challenge I noticed was it wasn’t easy to find gold, silver and bronze colours immediately in Tableau, however you can just just find the amounts of red,blue and green and just type these in. Alternatively you can just type in the Hex code and use these. Tableau has a lot of built in intelligence however when I mapped the the host cities on a map, it put the summer olympics in blue and winter in orange. Smart but not that smart 🙂 It was super easy to swop the colours around however and so you can easily see where these events are. This is kown as “Colour Symantics” using word association with colour. For example if we showed a list of fruits banana would be in yellow, maybe apples in red, oranges in orange etc. It means the reader does not have to keep going back to the legend to identify the variables.

With the dashboard below. We can click on a country and see how they have done as a percentage of medals, their running total and how they have done in the summer olympics vs winter olympics. There is also a sliding time scale on the left.

We can also click on a host city and see how the top nations did. As any event is either a summer or a winter event, I used a container at the bottom and crucially removed the header so that either only the respective bar chart for the selected summer or winter event appears. Anyway check it out and any tips for improvement always appreciated. Im not sure my dynamic filter is woring properly so that something to look at when I get a spare moment.

olympics final

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