Tableau 10.3 adds data driven alerts, a PDF connector, and a smart recommendations engine

One of the most useful new additions is the ability to use PDF files as a data source.

A new version of the visual analytics software, Tableau is out. There are a number of new, powerful features that allow the whole spectrum of users from citizen data scientists to businesses to do more with their data. Francois Ajenstat, Chief Product Officer at Tableau, says "It’s not just simple analysis our customers are seeking, it’s the power to unlock all of their data with ease and efficiency.  With smart recommendations, customers can get to the right data faster than ever - without having to spend time finding the right tables and joins. And with proactive monitoring of key metrics through features like data driven alerts, they can take action immediately and be more agile."

Users can stay on top of important changes in their organisations. Users can set alerts by pointing to the data they want to be notified on. When the data crosses a pre-set threshold, customers can instantly receive alerts. Paul Lisborg, manager of Business Intelligence and Analytics at Oldcastle Architectural says "Users will now be provided a way to automatically receive outliers on customer orders, sales, and production data, allowing us to quickly respond to potential issues and more effectively manage our business."

There are now smart table and join recommendations, that are powered by machine learning. The Tableau server analyses aggregate data source usage to recommend tables and corresponding joins across the organisation. This will allow consumers to rapidly identify additional data sources to enrich their analysis. The quality of the data models can be improved as users can apply insights from experts and other users in the organisation.

One of the most useful additions is the ability to use PDF files as a data source. A lot of reports, and data from official government sources are saved in PDFs and these can be a pain to convert and import into Tableu. Tableu has simplified the process and allows users to directly add PDF documents as a data source. Adobe estimates that there are 2.5 trillion PDF documents in the world, and Tableu users now have easy access to all this data. The new connectors support pulling of data from Amazon Athena, ServiceNow, MongoDB, Dropbox, and Microsoft OneDrive. In all, users can connect to 75 data sources through 66 connectors.

The visual analytics software allows users to progressively derive insights from data by asking questions in the form of simple clicks. The derived insights can be embedded in web pages, and users can create visual stories within the software itself. Interactive data, and live data sources can be used for the embedded visualisations. Those who want to check out the software can do so for free using Tableau Public.

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