It is the 4th day of the dashboard week. The challenge today is to get the best practice of the Tableau 8.3 which published 3 years ago. It is important to know what you can or can not do in the old versions. When we are on the client site, there is a high chance that we would not get the newest version for visualizing the data. It is also important to get your best practice within the limitation of tools.

The dataset today is quite similar to my one on Monday. It is the cocktail data with the ingredients and relevant features. However, to visualize it differently, I decided to introduce some new datasets to enrich it.

Alteryx workflow: to clean and enrich my dataset

After I found the alcohol ABV data on Wikipedia, I web scrape it and clean it to join my original data. The main prosses in my workflows are:

1.Download Data from the cocktail website.

2. Parse the data into columns and convert ingredients, measure, and tags into tall data.3. Down load and parse the Alcohol ABV data, Get the name of alcohol, and average ABV.

4. Clean the Strmeasure separate it into numbers and units.

5. Create fixed calculation tp alcohol ABV, volume, and total liquor volume to ‘strDrink’ level and output it.

What we can’t do with Tableau 8.3 version:

While making a dashboard using Tableau8.3, I found several things I can’t do that affect my creativity. We are very lucky to have the newest version that improved a lot. 7 things you could not do with Tableau in 3 years before:

  • Pick the color from the screen.
  • Create a LOD calculation
  • Create an instant calculation in the Shelf or Marks Card
  • Use Set parameter actions.
  • Use storyboard
  • Drag measures or dimensions into the calculation pane.
  • Hide the worksheets that are applied in the dashboard by one click.

When designing the dashboard, I planned to use LOD to calculate the ABV of each cocktail in Tableau and apply the set actions to allow users to select three different kinds of cocktails. As soon as I found that Tableau 8.3 could not do those two things, I adjust my strategy. I calculate the LOD in Alteryx using the ‘Summarize’ tool and apply the ‘Filter’ action to allow users ‘ctrl’ and select 3 cocktails’ name.

Dashboard: Select three drinks to get drunk

Let’s play a game using the dashboard. Suppose you will get drunk when you have more than 0.11 BAC. In my bar, you can have 3 drinks to get yourself drunk. Try to select the main manual and chose a type of cocktail you like. Then control select the name of the cocktails. You will see on the left the cup will fill with the drink. When the drink reaches the top, you get drunk. Sounds interesting? Go and play it by yourself. You can also hover over the cocktails to see the picture on the bottom. That will help you to select what you would like to drink.

Wrap-up for today

Today, we tried to create a viz using Tableau 8.3. It is a challenge because It doesn’t contain some good functions in recent versions. We can be in that situation when we are working with clients. I listed 7 things we can’t do with this version and mentioned how to build a good viz base on what I have. I use Alteryx to solve part of the problems. However, if the customer doesn’t have the Alteryx, I still can use ‘Excel’ to do this kind of calculation, although that means spending much more time.

To conclude, I would like to say what I think of the most today: A good data analyst can adapt to the tools and try to make the most of what they have.


Leona Lai
Author: Leona Lai