Assignment I

Visualization basics

The purpose of this assignment is to learn how to create visualizations using ready-made tools. One of the tools for this class will be the Tableau software package. Tableau automates the creation of visualizations and uses many of the proper visual encoding techniques that we will discuss during the course by default. [A free alternative to Tableau is Lyra. You are welcome to use this instead, but we will not provide any support/help.]

ToDos before March 5th (tutorial in class)

You will need to bring a laptop with Tableau installed on it in order to participate in the tutorial exercises during class. Therefore, please have Tableau installed on your machine before the tutorial on March 5.

1. Install Tableau

Tableau content that is published to Tableau Public on the web can be viewed in your web browser regardless of your operating system. However, to author and publish views and workbooks, you use Tableau Desktop Public and Professional Editions.  

2. Please read

3. Connect to data

To make sure you are all set for the tutorial try to connect to an excel sheet (e.g. Office Temperature data, see link below).
It works? -> Perfect
It didn’t? -> Try to fix it – maybe a driver is missing (see link above)

Homework (due March 10)

Create a Tableau dashboard (2 to 3 views) using the Office Temperature dataset.
Some background: Offices in the new faculty building get very hot during summer months. The temperature is above 30°C quite regularly. To prove this, we took the temperature and humidity in 10 rooms spread around the faculty building (see room plan for more info). The spreadsheet also contains temperature and humidity data from the ZMAG weather station “City Center of Vienna”. In the spreadsheet this outside temperature is labeled as room “1.00”.
The main answer we want to get from the data is: It’s too hot (the recommended temperature for office rooms: 25°C). However, use Tableau to explore temperature and additional data and find more questions and answers. For example:

Create a simple dashboard addressing those questions. Download the temperature-dataset here (Building's floor-plan)!


We will evaluate the effectiveness of your visualization for communicating the fundamental aspects of the data set. Does it give the viewer a good understanding of the different characteristics of the data? Here, we are looking for both effectiveness and creativity. (We do realize that people have differing levels of design ability and experience. Here, we are looking for a good effort, not necessarily some conference paper-worthy new idea.) The purpose of this assignment is to provide you with experience in the analysis of data like this and the design of visualizations to present the data.

We will grade your submission and presentation with the following scheme:

Please prepare a short report containing your ideas, approach, some details of your implementation and a screenshot. The report and worksheet should be uploaded to Git.

Late submission

Late Submissions are possible, yet they will be penalized. Academic Honesty