Tableau – Show independent calculations in comparison

Tableau is a great desktop app for creating live diagrams of huge datasets. I stumbled across this, when I was writing my final thesis on the university about narratives of big data within the consultant area in Denmark.

We did a very huge document analysis about how “big data” as a turn in the written area has emerged through the years. And Tableau was the solution for showing this!

But! There was one problem. We had three document analysis that we wanted to compare, and Tableau only seems to be able to compare more than two at the time in terms of using same coordinate systems for two comparable datasets. Now I found a solution for this problem.

The trick is to add a calulated field to the “Meassure Names” in the “Rows” field.
The setup you see here makes a graph showing the values on the Y-axis and names of the data entries (Meassure Names) on the X-axis, combined with a clasification (Søjle), also on the X-axis.

Tableau - Columns and Rows

In order to add data to the “Meassure Values”, you should right-click on the data you need to add and click; create –> Calculated field…

Tableau - calculated field

This creates a new firld, taht you can do whatever math you want on. Or you can leave it blank or the same. Beneath you see the example I made, calculating the percent-wise share of the entry, compared to the whole population.Tableau - calculated field - edit

After that You can just drag the new calculated field into the “Meassure Value” field as shown underneath. In this way you can compare any datasets. Just remember to do calculations right. Imagine datasets with different population sizes – that would be almost impossible to compare if you don’t calculate for this.

Tableau - Meassure Values

Hope you enjoyed it!

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