Map Input, the tool you probably haven’t used before but it’s worth thinking about when working with Spatial data. And just in case the name doesn’t resonate with you, this is what the Alteryx tool looks like:

Map Input is located within the IN/OUT group in the Alteryx Tool Palette

Map Input Configuration Window

So why should you consider using the Map Input tool when working with spatial data?

The Map Input tool allows users to create spatial objects (points, lines, and polygons) that you can use as inputs in your workflow.

With the ability to create your own spatial objects you can:

  • focus on getting your spatial calculations working before bringing in another dataset,
  • draw lines to check data or proof distance calculations,
  • enhance our data with location points (estimates), and
  • filter data based on if it is contained within a custom polygon.

Let’s explore two examples of where the Map Input tool can be used in data manipulation:

1 – Filtering data based on geographic location

In this example, we want to know which airports are in New South Wales. We have the name of six airports and their longitude and latitudes. The following clip will demonstrate how we can answer this with Map Input.


2 – Enhancing our data with spatial points

In this example, we are going to be looking at three countries and we want to assign them a point location. With this additional information we can then go on to create estimate distances between the countries.


Exploring some areas where using the Map Input can be helpful, I hope that it comes in handy when working on your next project involving spatial information.


Scott Johnston
Author: Scott Johnston