Tableau Software

Tableau Software, global leader in rapid-fire business intelligence software, incorporated Mapfluence, Urban Mapping's embedded geographic technology, into Tableau to provide customers with sophisticated mapping and high-value data capabilities. Following Tableau's requirements for distinctive cartographic styling, Urban Mapping created several versions of high contrast basemaps. Additionally, Urban Mapping's professional services group localized thousands of place names and undertook exhaustive research to create international boundaries that reflect several different world views. Now, Tableau's customers can easily create stark geographic visualizations to yield greater insight. Customers can also overlay demographic map layers from the Mapfluence on-demand data catalog.

Custom base map served within Tableau's desktop software. Map visualizations include a choice of cartographic styles, crisp fonts, detailed boundaries, intelligent label placement, deep international coverage, localization and up to 16 zoom levels.

Challenge

Tableau Software provides more than 50,000 customers from Fortune 500 companies and beyond with high-value business intelligence software that allows them to analyze, present and share interactive data from spreadsheets and databases. The ability to visualize, manipulate and analyze this data on a map adds a valuable geographic component to Tableau products, and customers were eager for increased mapping capability. "When we realized that users were hacking the map functionality, we knew adding map features would become part of our long term product development strategy," said Dan Jewett, VP Product Management.

Solution

Tableau implemented Mapfluence with a custom basemap created by Urban Mapping. "Urban Mapping was the only place to go for a custom base map that meets our high standards for elegant and beautiful visualization," said Jewett. Urban Mapping worked with Tableau to iterate and deliver within their release schedule for a significant and successful product upgrade. Over several iterations, Urban Mapping sourced data from OpenStreetMap and commercial sources.

Tableau now offers its customers map visualizations with a choice of cartographic styles, crisper fonts, richer and more detailed boundaries, intelligent label placement, deep international coverage and up to sixteen zoom levels. Tableau customers also have the ability to render their own ‘map sandwich,' a process by which individual data layers are composited to create a unique base layer on the fly.

Additionally, Tableau customers can take advantage of the Mapfluence on-demand data catalog and layer in high-value demographic data. By accessing Mapfluence platform via API, Tableau customers can thematically color and shade per capita income, tax rates, household and occupation information, and other data instantly, all within the client application. This means no reliance on legacy enterprise mapping services which are often cumbersome and unreliable.

"The quality of the cartography and customization really makes the data pop. The maps are clean, and help tell the data story clearly when published to and embedded on the web," said Jewett. Tableau's customers now have three distinct cartographic styles to choose from for mapping their data and additional styles are already in the works for future versions. "Mapfluence's custom capabilities and growing data catalog have us excited about our future software releases," said Jewett. "These elegant cartographic features will be an integral part of our product development roadmap going forward."

Tableau Software

Urban Mapping was the only place to go for a custom base map that meets our high standards for elegant and beautiful visualization. The quality of the cartography and customization really makes the data pop. The maps are clean, and help tell the data story clearly when published to and embedded on the web. Dan Jewett
VP, Product Management
Tableau Software

Sydney, Australia at zoom level 15.

Using Tableau Public, custom maps can easily be published to the web. Data stands out against an alternate clean map style.