The Data School Blog

How to Create a Waterfall Chart

Back in my old job, I often saw waterfall charts being used to explain which factors were contributing to growth/decline in a particular area. I always thought these were a great visual representation of positive/negative influences, but never got around to creating...

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4 Steps to Creating a Parameter

With the recent release of the new Tableau, there has been a lot of buzz around the new parameter action features. Therefore, I thought I would take a step back and write a blog post about how to actually create a good old parameter in the first place!

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Week 1 down…

First week done! It’s been a hell of a week; my brain feels like it’s absorbed more information in 5 days then in the last five years (shameful how accurate this probably is). There have been times that I swear the clocks in these buildings are broken. We have two...

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Alteryx Advanced – A Step Up

Today I decided to give the Alteryx Advanced Exam a shot. I didn't do much specific preparation, but followed Hanna's advice that the best way to practise is to try the real thing. So how did I do...? I got 75%. So close, but so far! (The pass mark is 80%) Considering...

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MakePoint and MakeLine in Tableau

With the new release of Tableau, there have been a lot of new features to get everyone excited. Parameter Actions and Vector Maps seem to be getting a lot of the attention (and rightly so!) but Tableau have also released a feature which allows you to create points on...

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My Work Shadowing Experience

I was given the opportunity to shadow a dataschooler (Steph) who’s on her third client placement so this blog post will be going through my experience and what I did to try and get the most out of it.

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Using Parameter Actions to Dynamically Update the ‘Relative to’ section of a Table Calculation

In one of my previous post,s I wrote about Dynamically Update the ‘Relative to’ section of a Table Calculation, using a parameter.
Now with the release of Tableau 2019.2, and the introduction of Parameter actions, it is possible to dynamically select a member of a dimension as the ‘Relative to’ part of a Table Calculation.
In this blog post, I will explain how to achieve this result.

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The peaks of the Data School

It’s the very last week of training for DS13. I can’t believe it’s already been four months since we started! It was a crazy ride but fun at that, so here are my top moments of being at the Data School so far.

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Tableau QA Fears – Justified?

You may remember a blog I wrote at the end of April, all about my hopes and fears for the Tableau QA exam. Well, first things first, I passed - yay! Let's revisit some of those fears and see if they were justified. Fear #1: Running out of Time This first fear was...

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At last we have Parameter Actions!

Back in Week 15 of Makeover Monday, I accidentally used a Parameter Action. It was early on in my Tableau journey and I didn't realise that I had built my dashboard in the 2019.2 Beta. Of course, I was unable to upload this to Tableau Public and was disappointed. But...

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Tableau Quick Tip: Unfix your axes with one click

In this Tableau quick tip I am going show you how to dynamically spread your line chart. People often have a parameter that allows them to select different metric over time. Sometimes, someone hands a workbook to you where the axes are all fixed and when you start...

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Using Parameter Actions in a Scatterplot

Today DS14 was experimenting with the latest, beta version of Tableau Desktop (2019.2). In this short blog post, I will describe how to use some of the new features of this beta version to build a scatterplot that shows the relationship between profit and sales...

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Reflections on my DataDive experience

Last weekend I’ve participated in an event taking place at the data school, called DataDive.
The event was organised by DataKind, a non-profit organisation which aims to help other charities using data.
To do so they recruit volunteers which participate in a Hackathon style event, where they clean, analyse and visualise data.

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Step by step guide into creating a Macro

What is a Macro? A Macro is a group of tools that are grouped together into a single tool. In Alteryx there a 4 types of macros: Standard Macro: runs only once – used when the exact same process is repeatedBatch Macro: repeats the process for each incoming field into...

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Calculating Minimum Dates Without Using LODs

Usually, to calculate the minimum date you would use an LOD calculation to get it – the equation would be {Fixed [Dimension] : Min([Date])} and in case you want to get the minimum date for the whole dataset (to the lowest level of detail) you would use {Min ([Date])}....

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How to create a dumbbell chart on Tableau?

A dumbbell chart illustrates the change between two (or more) data points. To create a dumbbell chart on Tableau you will need to create a dual axis; one of the axes has a mark type of a line and the second axes has a mark type of a circle. Below is a step by step...

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My First ever experience as a Project Manager

Last week was the first time I had ever managed a team in my life. I wouldn't say it was an easy experience - but it was a rewarding one. I wanted to write a short guide on the challenges and solutions the team and I came up with during the week, but I feel that...

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Webscraping through Alteryx as if you are logged in

Here's something which might help you if you've ever needed to download a load of URLs which are only accessible if you are logged in. Normally, webscraping with Alteryx is pretty simple - you connect a text input containing the URL to a Download tool and parse out...

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Top tips for project management

DS14 had the chance to do their first client project 2 weeks ago. Luckily, I was the project manager of our first project and in this blog post I will be sharing with you our experience and some of the lessons I learned as a project manager. In case you are not...

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RegEx: what, why, and how?

RegEx is a sequence of characters that defines a pattern in a text field. The characters could be words, numbers, symbols, punctuation, unicode, etc. It is used for extracting, replacing, and matching text.

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RegEx in Alteryx

DS14 spent their first day of this short week with Nick ‘RegEx’ Jastrzebski and Andre, learning about regular expressions in Alteryx and Tableau Desktop & Prep.

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How to round time in Tableau

This week I came across a neat little trick to round DATETIMEs in tableau to the nearest time interval you want. I'll start by showing you what the calculations I used were, and then I'll explain the theory behind it. I. The calculations To round to the nearest hour...

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Teamwork

Confession: I don't think that I'm naturally a very good team player When presented with a task, the first thing that I want to do is dive into the detail and unpick the problem. I want to translate it into words that my own brain can understand and, honestly, I fear...

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Dashboard Week: NO TABLEAU

Today was dashboard week day 3, or maybe day 4 (according to Hania), but technically day 2 (for me), taking place the week after dashboard week. Get your head around that one. Our task was set by Sophie who wanted us to dive into baby name data for England and Wales....

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Dashboard Week – Day 3 Flourish

Before joining the DS I remember reading Dashboard Weeks posts in the blog, and often I came across articles about challenges using another visualisation tool than Tableau. The last articles I remember were based on PowerBI, so I was expecting that one of our Dashboard week day would be based on this software….

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Dashboard week? day 3: Playing with a new tool

So our dashboard week is a little weird as it's not on a single week but taking part whenever we can due to the amount of bank holiday's we have during our 4 months training. Today we were looking at baby name data using a tool that none of us had ever used before:...

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Dashboard Week – Letting my creativity ‘Flourish’

Today, Sophie decided that we look at UK baby name prevalence stats from the UNS website. However, we had to visualise it in a free, web-based software called Flourish. See below: https://flourish.studio/ Interestingly, Flourish seems to focus on very different things...

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Dashboard Week Day 3? – The Final Flourish

Today we were tasked with quite a different Dashboard, and we weren’t even expecting a dashboard day either, and this was to create a visualisation using the tool Flourish . Flourish is a free tool that is available to create quick visualisations from a series of...

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By Failing to Prepare, You are Preparing to Fail

Day 10 was project day and my key takeaway from the task was if you want to deliver an effective and presentable dashboard within a limited time-frame; then it is essential you plan! The Task In the morning we were all provided a data set which we had to access via a...

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Dashboard Week: Avengers

What is supposed to be Dashboard Week day 4 is in fact my day 1. Monday was a holiday of the bank variety, Tuesday I had a date with dentistry, and Wednesday was an impromptu stats 101 with Beth. Today Andy gave us a pretty cool dataset on comic book data,...

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Dashboard Week – Day 2

The task: Read it in here: https://www.thedataschool.co.uk/andy-kriebel/avengers/ We were also told that the final result should be in the format of an infographic and that we had to show our drawings to Andy before moving on to Tableau. The "why did I struggle?" My...

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Dashboard Week Day 2: The Avengers

At the end of my latest blog post, Dashboard Week Day 1: NHS Trusts, I wished that our next challenge for Dashboard week would be more concentrated on design.
It seems like my wish came true, since Andy for today task, asked us to create an infographic dashboard using data on The Avengers comic books series.

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Dashboard week – Day 2 – The Endgame (Nearly)

After what can only be described as a gruelling introduction to Dashboard week on Tuesday, read my blog here if you haven’t already, Andy decided to give us a well-structured data set. This was focusing on the Deaths and lives of Various Avengers within the Marvel...

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Dashboard Week Day 2: The Avengers

From what my kids tell me, tonight is supposed to be an epic night. Avengers Endgame is released at midnight to theatres all around the world. They don't have tickets for the midnight showing (you know, school and all the next day), so they'll be doing their best to...

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Alteryx Easter Eggs

Easter has just gone past so I’m a little late with the best easter eggs of all… Alteryx Easter eggs! Here are a few hidden treats on Alteryx that I’ve found out about while at the dataschool.

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How to create a Pareto chart?

For those who aren’t familiar with Pareto principle which is also known as 80/20 rule, the idea is that by doing 20% of the work you can generate 80% of the benefit of doing the entire job – therefore businesses frequently use it to solve problems so they can...

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Dashboard Week Day 1: NHS Trusts

For the first day of our Dashboard week, Andy challenged us to gather and analyse data on the spend over £25K at NHS Trusts.
The data was scattered over 391 different URLs, each containing multiple files (often in different formats)

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A quick recap of Dashboard Day 1

For our first day of dashboard week, Andy gave us the difficult task of scraping the data.gov.uk website for lots and lots of files containing large expenses by NHS trusts. See here for our brief: https://www.thedataschool.co.uk/andy-kriebel/nhs-trusts/ This was...

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Dashboard Week – Day 1: NHS Trust Expenditure

Our first challenge for our (shorter than normal) dashboard week is the (harder than normal) challenge of obtaining NHS Trust data for expenditures over £25,000 and visualising that data in Tableau. The full details can be found in Andy's post. The Issue The main...

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