Tableau futures—seamless access to your data

From the 2013 Tableau Customer Conference!

Seamless Access to the Data—coming in Tableau 8.1 and 8.2

Nothing else matters if you can’t get your data into Tableau. This was a common refrain I have said for quite some time, Tableau is irrelevant if regular business people can’t figure out how to get the data into the product. In fact, it is a very frustrating experience.

Tableau states that cleaning, integrating and reshaping your data should be available as visual operations. You shouldn’t need to learn SQL to manage it.

A new data connection interface was demoed. Earlier this year, I contributed to the vision and feature debates for this area as part of a talented team of people at Tableau. This team included Jun K, Dan C, Jock M, Chris S, Richard and several other great people. Here’s an example flow:

1) You have some data about bike rentals.  It’s in Excel or a text file and looks like this.  A bit rough-column names in all caps, start_time is a text field and some other important data isn’t in this file.



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A brief history—Freakalytics and Tableau—since 2008

Stephen and I are frequently asked the story of why we wrote the first book endorsed by Tableau Software and how we launched their original, in-person training program back in 2009. In fact, we have been asked about this so many times, I decided it would be worthwhile to share the details.

Stephen first discovered Tableau Software while working at Netflix. He was so impressed with the visual analytic capabilities of the product that after working with it for a couple of years, he approached the executives at Tableau about writing the first book on Tableau, which was still a tiny company at the time. They were excited about the idea so we met with CEO Christian Chabot, CDO and Co-founder Chris Stolte and several other executives to discuss the book content.

July 2009
Stephen completed and published the first edition of Rapid Graphs with Tableau Software just in time for the Tableau Customer Conference in Seattle. Marc Rueter, now a Senior Director at Tableau and Technical Reviewer of the book, wrote

“A great work- this is going to be a much-loved book.”

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Free Tableau 8 e-book at the TCC Alteryx Pavilion!

RGTS 8 Book Cover Front 1500Visit the Alteryx Pavilion at Tableau Customer Conference 2013 in Washington, DC next week to learn more about the value of Strategy Analytics and Alteryx for Visual Analytics.  Notably, attendees can pick up a complimentary USB key with Visual Analytics Best Practices including work by Freakalytics and the key even includes a preview of Rapid Graphs with Tableau 8 and a coupon code for a free copy of the e-book! Note that you must redeem your code by September 18th, 2013.

This is the original guide to Tableau for The Accidental Analyst®.  Now in its fourth edition, this is the best-selling book on Tableau, trusted by thousands including many Tableau employees who learned Tableau from it- both before and after joining the company!  Back in 2009, Elissa Fink (CMO at Tableau) wrote about Rapid Graph with Tableau Software 5, “A must read for anyone interested in Tableau. Clear explanations, practical advice and beautiful examples!”  Just a few months ago, the Marketing team at Tableau ordered bulk copies of Rapid Graphs for their new customer acquisition program, reiterating their excitement over the four editions of this book!

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