Tag Archives: filters

A New Compact (Mostly) Filter Layout for Showing All the Options

I’m preparing my Tableau Customer Conference 2013 session and there is way too much material to present in the time available, so I’m killing my darlings with a couple of posts in the next few weeks.

I had a situation where my users needed to select from a basket of hospital quality measures on a dashboard, and since some of the measures were new I wanted the filter to show all of the available options, and based on the dashboard layout there wasn’t really space on either side of the view for a vertically oriented filter.

What I really wanted was to show all the options at the top of the dashboard, I ended up getting a little creative and coming up with a new  filter layout. Read on to find out how!
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Creating a Dynamic “Parameter” with a Tableau Data Blend

As of June 2015, Tableau is actively looking at different aspects of the (complicated) subject of dynamic parameters. See Dynamic Parameters: The Results are In for an overview, and Dynamic Parameters Update for continuing updates.

Currently (July 2013), the #1 most-voted-for Idea for Tableau is Dynamic Parameters. Here, I’ll show you a technique for using Tableau data blending to create a dynamic, data-driven “parameter”. We’re going to use a loosely coupled secondary data source to get the information associated with the “parameter” and return that information to the primary data source, where it can be used in further calculations. Some examples of where this can be useful:

  • Choose one value to build a comparison to other values, such as finding the distance from a chosen origin city to a set of destination cities, or a market basket-type analysis where we want to compare one against others.
  • Set the limits and input data to an algorithm that is then used to create other results, for example to get a starting set of data to use to build a projection, such as an executive retirement forecast model.

Read on for a description of the technique and demos of all three options!

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Identifying (and Using) Quick Filter Selection Status

This post on the Tableau forums led me to figure out a new trick with Quick Filters. The goal is to know whether a Quick Filter has (All) Customers selected or some subset of Customers, then return a different measure based on that flag. Just to make it a little more fun, we want this calculation to work when there are other filters present, or not, to look something like the following view based on the Superstore Sales data:

Screen Shot 2013-05-30 at 11.36.17 PM

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