Hey there! Who wouldn’t love a beautiful map visualization? I have some great news for you. Tableau has updated its spatial functions since version 2022.4, which makes working with mapping so much easier! How cool is that?

In this blog, I will introduce to you the two most crucial spatial functions in Tableau: BUFFER() and INTERSECTS().

This map visualizes lists of all the restaurants in Melbourne city areas. Supposed from this map, you would like to find out how many restaurants overlap a certain point on the map – it could be a school, area administrative office, or anything else. You can do that by first creating a Buffer around that point. In this case, I am interested in finding all the restaurants within a 5 meters radius of The Data School Melbourne and it geocodes are (-37.8176084,144.9552951).

Therefore, I will create a buffer around this school using the following calculation.

Drag the Buffer calculation to the view to create another map layer to show the 500 meters boundary around the school.

Now my goal is to only keep the points inside the Buffer layer so that I will use the INTERSECTS () function which returns a Boolean value. So that I will create a new calculate field:

Add this new field into Filter, select the True value then we will have the final result:

In conclusion, by using the BUFFER() and INTERSECTS() function, you can perform spatial analysis in Tableau and gain insights from your data. By using spatial functions in Tableau, you can gain insights from your data that might not be apparent through traditional data analysis methods.

The Data School
Author: The Data School