Tableau is a data analysis tool that is relatively new. For those who are familiar with Excel, it’s pivot charts done much better. The professional tool is a little expensive for casual consumer use, but recently Tableau released a free version of the software called Tableau Public. Tableau Public is a fully functional version of tableau, the main limitation is that any output must be stored on the public servers and is therefore accessible to anyone.

This month Tableau is conducting a contest jointly with Read Write Web. They are providing 4 sample data sets and the best interactive visualization will win a trip to the Web 2.0 conference in May.

Since we are familiar with Tableau, a couple of us at work are going to be entering the contest. I will probably create several versions of each set until I get something I’m happy with, but my first stab at these sets is the following:

Also, I plan to post some how to videos on data analysis, including some tutorials on how to use tableau. It’s a really great piece of software and the free public version is going to allow many people to see just how good it is.