Tableau Interview with Pricey Information Two
39 weeks full, 1,726 picture recordsdata, 68 weblog posts, 50 Tableau workbooks, 4.3 gigs of knowledge on two Dropbox folders and numerous hours of time spent. It’s the Dear Data Two project by Andy Kriebel and Jeffrey Shaffer.
Martha Kang (MK): What’s quantified self?
Andy Kriebel (AK): Quantified information is basically simply gathering information about your self. There are many methods to gather this information, for instance there are many apps that I take advantage of, but it surely may also be simply recording the info in a pocket book with pen or pencil. I have a tendency to make use of a variety of apps to trace my information or just log issues in Google Sheets.
Jeff Shaffer (JS): Some nice examples of this are Nicholas Felton, who creates an annual report on his life and publishes it annually, known as the Feltron Report. Actually, he only recently completed the final 12 months of his 10 12 months mission. One other individual to comply with is Chris Dancy, who is often known as “The world’s most related man”. I heard Chris communicate at a Banking Analytics summit and have been following him ever since.
MK: Why did you resolve to do the Pricey-Information-Two mission?
JS: I’ve been a long-time fan of Giorgia Lupi’s work. I actually love her visible designs. I believe the widespread background we share in music additionally speaks to me in her work. So after I noticed the mission that Giorgia and Stefanie had been doing, it instantly grabbed my consideration. I reached out to Andy and after a number of exchanges he mentioned, “Certain. Let’s do it.” I used to be actually for a lot of causes. First, it regarded enjoyable. Second, it was very completely different from what we usually do day-to-day with expertise. Andy and I work in instruments like Tableau, R and Alteryx. I used to be additionally focused on what our strategy was going to yield and the way it could be completely different from the unique authors tackle it.
AK: Jeff despatched me an e-mail in early April and I wasn’t conscious of the mission on the time. We talked about it a bit and I didn’t assume it could take an excessive amount of time. As soon as we bought additional into the mission, actuality set in. It’s actually a royal ache within the ass. I believe each Jeff and I’ve come to have a love-hate relationship with this mission week by week. Finally, this can be a quantified self mission, so we are attempting to seize the life round us by way of sketching the hidden patterns discovered inside our information. We’re additionally having a variety of enjoyable studying about one another – although I’m pretty sure Jeff is fairly terrified by now.
JS: Time has definitely been an element. It’s an enormous period of time, getting the info collectively, determining easy methods to visualize it, creating the cardboard, taking the photographs after which modifying in Photoshop, then writing and posting weblog posts and the Tableau stuff.
MK: What’s your most memorable viz and why?
AK: In our speak on the Tableau Convention this 12 months, we ended the presentation with a number of of our favourite weeks, each our personal and by one another. My favourite postcard of mine thus far was Week 24: (Doorways). I do know Jeff actually preferred this one too. My daughter and I went out into our neighborhood in London and recorded all the door colours for all the close by homes. We bought plenty of unusual seems to be, however fortunately nobody known as the police. The ensuing card was actually cool and really colourful. This was additionally a enjoyable week as a result of I allowed me to have some father-daughter time engaged on the mission.
AK: My favourite postcard of Jeff’s is Week 13 (Secrets and techniques). You possibly can watch our video from the TCC convention to listen to the entire story, but it surely concerned invisible ink and UV mild to learn the key viz on the cardboard. I used to be fairly stunned at first and thought it was actually creepy, however in the long run thought it was fairly intelligent.
Jeff’s week 13 postcard in UV mild:
JS: It’s onerous to choose favorites, as a result of there are such a lot of. If I needed to choose a favourite, I actually preferred my card for Week 6 (Bodily Contact). Contemplating the subject, I needed one thing that could possibly be touched. I ended up utilizing a braille approach, punching braille into the cardboard then coloring the raised dots. I liked the outcome. I even made a replica of this card and despatched it to Giorgia.
JS: From a Tableau standpoint, I actually preferred Week 4 (Mirrors) the place I created a postcard that needed to be learn in a mirror. Your entire postcard, textual content and viz had been all completed backwards. That was actually enjoyable to construct in Tableau, creating charts that went backwards and discovering a backwards font.
JS: Extra lately, I created a puzzle viz for Week 23 (Being Good) and finally turned it right into a working puzzle recreation in Tableau utilizing 25 parameters to maneuver the items round and to test for the answer.
Click on the picture beneath to open then viz:
JS: I like so lots of Andy’s playing cards. Extra lately, in week 28, Andy created a card that used 6 completely different pre-attentive attributes. He actually packed a ton of knowledge into the very small canvas that we now have to work with every week.
JS: His information gathering and Tableau work on week 9 (Connections) can also be actually spectacular.
MK: What have you ever realized from this mission, concerning the course of or about yourselves?
JS: I’ll say that I’ve additionally grow to be far more environment friendly within the course of as I’ve progressed week by week. I merely had too, as a result of it’s so time consuming. I’m definitely extra environment friendly with the instruments, particularly Tableau, HMTL and Photoshop, but additionally in attending to my ideas faster.
The larger lesson was studying to not get caught in perfection. I usually say, “Don’t labor over shades of white”. There’s plenty of weeks that I look again on and assume, “I’d wish to redo that week. I may create one thing higher”, however then there are different weeks the place I used to be actually proud of the tip outcome. It’s too simple to get caught within the imperfections of the mission, making a mistake on the cardboard after which desirous to redo it and preserve redoing it to get it proper. In most of my work, particularly with gel pens, there’s no undo, which implies you actually solely get one crack at it. You study to reside with the minor errors and imperfections, in any other case you’ll by no means get to the end line.
AK: Buster Benson has mentioned about quantified self, “Be Conscious of the smaller moments that outline our lives”. Monitoring information week by week, you begin to concentrate to the little issues which can be occurring round you that you just in any other case would most likely ignore. For instance, for week 23, we needed to observe “Being Good”. I used the info that week to replicate again on my buddies and associates on what I must be doing vs. what I used to be doing. If it weren’t for this mission and specializing in the info, there is no such thing as a method I might have been desirous about that. What number of occasions would I stroll by way of the neighborhood and never really take note of the colour of the doorways? Now it’s onerous to not discover them.
I’ve additionally seen that this mission has consciously modified my conduct. For instance, after I was monitoring damaging feelings, I felt fairly unhappy all week. Irrespective of the subject, this mission has helped carry these bits of my life to the forefront of my thoughts every week, shifting them from the unconscious to the acutely aware a part of my mind. Certainly this results the info assortment.
MK: What differentiates you guys from the unique Pricey Information mission? Or do you assume it’s extra of a continuation of the unique mission?
JS: I actually tried to be inventive and modern with this mission, particularly as a result of Giorgia and Stefani did this primary. This actually took me out of my consolation zone. Moreover drawing with gel pens and pencils, I used braille, invisible ink, writing backwards, burning playing cards with candles and there’s even some extra strategies that you just’ll see in upcoming weeks. If we thought an excessive amount of about this at first and realized how wonderful the unique mission was going to be for Giorgia and Stefanie, we most likely wouldn’t have completed it. Right here we’re following artists of their footsteps, every week they create these stunning playing cards, win quite a few awards, and so on. Then we come alongside and create the identical factor for a similar folks to see. There could be the sensation from the info viz neighborhood of “Hey have a look at these guys making an attempt to mimic Pricey Information” or “Did you see their terrible drawing final week?” We needed to put that every one apart. We needed to see what our tackle it could seem like and the way it could be completely different from the unique mission, not attempt to imitate it. On the identical time, we each take plenty of inspiration from the unique authors. I’ve realized a ton all through this mission and I’m thrilled that we determined to do it, however I additionally agree with Andy, it’s undoubtedly a love-hate relationship week by week. I might say general, going again in time and realizing what I do know now, I might have made the identical determination.
AK: For me, the most important differentiator is that I’m utilizing Tableau to discover the info and attempt to construct my remaining postcard in Tableau. I noticed this mission as a method for me to not solely be extra inventive as an artist with pen and paper, but additionally as a method to push the boundaries of what I learn about Tableau. I’ve completed issues in Tableau that I by no means thought had been doable and I now see Tableau extra as a drawing canvas than a charting instrument.
JS: I couldn’t agree extra.
MK: How has Tableau helped you with this mission?
AK: I like to have a look at what the women created every week for inspiration artistically and for a narrative. This offers me concepts for what I may doubtlessly create in Tableau as a “postcard”. Each week I take my information and the very first thing I do is load it into Tableau. Then I begin to discover. I usually create a dozen or so visualizations, in search of tales within the information. I then slender this down right into a extra refined story and finally create my card. Tableau has been a vital a part of the method for me from the very starting.
JS: I strategy every week practically the alternative of Andy. I take the info and begin sketching on paper. I usually define a postcard on a clean piece of paper after which sketch concepts, normally some concept that fashioned throughout the week. Then I create the postcard. I did this as a result of I didn’t wish to be tied right down to chart sorts or instruments in Tableau that may drive me into pondering of a sure design. I needed to be free to attract something. Then for lots of the weeks, I’ve gone again and tried to recreate my postcard in Tableau, some extra efficiently than others. Some weeks have been actually difficult, pushing me to strive various things in Tableau. For instance, week 16 (Wardrobe) the place I made colour circles into bullseyes with a knowledge set that didn’t have a single measure, solely dimensions.
MK: What influence do you assume you’ve had on the neighborhood?
JS: It’s actually nice to see others in the neighborhood do that. A couple of folks have related and began to do their very own variations of this mission. I’ve added it to my information visualization class on the College of Cincinnati and I’ve had wonderful suggestions. The scholars actually appear to benefit from the mission, which is simply a single postcard in a single week as an project. They’ve created some actually nice work too. Extra lately, 18 folks have come collectively for Information Chain and are pairing as much as ship postcards to one another month-to-month. We’ve impressed some cool Tableau strategies too. I discussed on the Tableau Convention that week 3 (Thank You) was notably difficult in Tableau and some weeks later Brian Status from the Info Lab posted an unbelievable answer here for turning any picture right into a polygon form utilizing Photoshop and Alteryx to get the info. That was very cool and will likely be helpful for every kind of issues. And take a look at Andy’s Tableau approach on week 30 (Time Alone). That was actually cool too.
AK: We added this as an train on the Information Faculty as nicely. All the college students on the Information Faculty created a postcard after which mailed it to Jeff. I additionally bought actually excited watching our children take part. My son Oscar determined that he needed to create a card. So he sat down on his personal, downloaded Tableau, went by way of the coaching movies, crafted his personal postcard after which despatched it to Jeff and his household. Oscar is 13! This was proof to me that Tableau is a instrument that anybody can study actually rapidly.
AK: Jeff’s women then did the identical factor, sending a card again to us.
When Oscar was completed together with his postcard, he mentioned to me, “The group of the graph has a direct impact on the productiveness of the graph.” That’s a fairly wonderful assertion coming from somebody working for the primary time in Tableau and creating his first information visualization. Had it not been for this mission, I’m undecided when he would have determined to strive Tableau.
JS: On a associated observe, I attended the Ladies in Information session on the Tableau convention. A packed room of individuals supporting an ideal trigger. One of many questions posed was, “how can we get extra ladies into the sector of knowledge analytics or in STEM applications basically?” I believe tasks like this are a part of the reply. Right here’s a thought:
First, everybody ought to have a daughter. As a father of dual women, there may be nothing I need greater than for my women to attain no matter it’s they wish to do in life. They’re dreamers and one in all them loves all issues science. If we had extra dads that had been supporting their daughters, possibly we’d have extra males supporting ladies in these efforts.
Second, for younger kids, I believe tasks like this are how we are able to have interaction kids. My women noticed this as a cool mission the place they may play with colours and make sounds. My daughter Nina tried to show water into completely different colours with sprinkles and when that didn’t work she began filling glasses to make musical sounds. In the meantime, I used to be getting caught up in making the postcard, however she was enthralled with the glasses and the sounds, i.e., the subject and supply of the info. What an ideal lesson. We’d like extra issues like this for our kids. Make the subject and information set fascinating to them after which they’ll have interaction.
AK/JS: We’d actually wish to thank our households for placing up with us for practically a 12 months now whereas we did this mission. There are many late nights and weekend hours dedicated to this and sometimes we’re utilizing them as our supply of knowledge or inspiration for the postcards. Thanks!
To maintain up with the mission go to: www.Dear-Data-Two.com