01 March 2016
One of the perks I enjoy as a Diploma in Business Information Technology (DBIT) student is that we get regular exposure to the real-life industry through attending talks by industry speakers and learning software skills which are highly sought-after in the industry.
Earlier this year, I learnt a useful and interesting software in my Year 2 Business Intelligence module - Tableau.
Tableau is a powerful data visualization software that many multi-national companies use to help them visualize their business data and make better decisions. I am someone who really loves to analyse things, so I find Tableau really useful.
To give us an insider peek of this software, our DBIT lecturers invited Mr Vaidy Krishan from Tableau to share more about data analytics (which is one of the hottest topics in the industry).
The presenter first shared with us the background story and advantages for using graph/diagram visualisation.
He even proved the importance of using graphical/pictorial visualization. Let’s use the following example to illustrate the point:
Figure 1: Are you able to tell which number appears
the most number of times in 5 seconds? Probably Not!
Figure 2: Are you able to tell which number appears the most number of times in 5 seconds? Definite Yes! The bigger the circle, the more number of times number ‘5’ appears.
With the above example, from figure 2, we are able to identify the number ‘5’ appears the most number of times in less than 5 seconds. This is because our brain processes data represented in visualization faster and can remember for a longer period of time.
During the talk, Mr Vaidy demonstrated many interesting examples of how we can use Tableau to generate different types of data visualizations for real-life projects.
For example, one of the demonstrations he gave was about how we can use Tableau to plot out the Singapore map to show the crowd levels at different MRT stations on weekends. Take a look at the visualization that was generated in Tableau. Does it not give you a very useful and quick overview of which are the crowded stations at one glance?
Conclusion I totally agree on the importance and usefulness of using data visualization. Data visualization is crucial especially when an analyst needs to present big data to the busy management team in a short period of time.
With the knowledge gained from this talk, I went on to explore and try out the different visualization techniques that can be used on Tableau. I then applied my new skills to my Business Intelligence module's assignment and got a pretty good grade for it!?
This article is written by Law Yong Wei, a Year 3 student from the Diploma in Business Information Technology (DBIT).