The state of the art
While great for processing data, traditionally Alteryx has lacked native visualization capabilities,
especially when it comes to spatial data. It also offers few options in the form of sharing your
work or collaborating with others, particularly business stakeholders and clients. You can use
it to generate truly insightful reports, but these are not readily accessible to users. Instead,
Alteryx offers options for loading your reports into third-party visualization platforms.
Whether you share your data or reports somehow to be viewed locally, or more widely, with help
from third-party BI tools, this approach will sooner or later encounter one or more of these
- Geospatial support is limited. Often you will have to make do with map charts.
In other cases, the map widget cannot cope with multiple layers, or with more than
a few thousand features. Also, there are spatial functions which
seasoned users expect, but most BI tools do not support.
Drawing ad-hoc areas for spatial filtering, performing spatial drill-through on a
location, collaborative data edits, performing measurements, overlaying own data on the
map, dynamic feature styling and labeling — the list goes on.
- Interactive analysis is not possible. Yes, there may be filters and sorting,
formulas, and perhaps conditional logic encoded in the reports, depending on the platform.
However, truly interactive analysis, in which the user can change analysis parameters to
answer “where” and “what if” questions — that is rarely possible, if at all. A simple
example is allowing your users to input a location and a time value to find certain
points within driving distance. Say, only hospitals. From one million other points.
- No convenient method to automate updates. Some BI tools may require
multiple products to create a data flow that will update your reports automatically.
In other cases data can only be refreshed manually. How about updating one dashboard
with multiple datasets, from separate workflows? Running at different times, on
different machines. How about data integrity and consistency checks?
illustreets is the platform built to solve roadblocks like these, and more. It is an end-to-end,
cloud-based location intelligence solution which empowers analysts to collaborate, and open up
their work to everyone, in a secure and automated fashion.
A better approach
Alteryx has multiple tools for uploading data, including one for
Set up the illustreets live update service to fetch data securely from S3 as often as every few minutes,
with the ability to either overwrite the data or append to the existing dataset. Once in, you
can transform and combine the data further, blending in additional data sources.
The beauty is that, in illustreets, all datasets, transformations, and visualizations that you
create are being automatically linked to their source. They will run and refresh by themselves
every time new data arrives via any of the linked sources.
More importantly, data is being checked against its original schema, automatically, at every
step performed either by the user, or by the system itself. You can rest assured that your dashboards
and business apps, which your clients rely on for their work, will not be ruined because of a glitch
in data preparation.
In illustreets you can use data views to further transform, combine, and aggregate your data.
However, you can extend all these with user parameters for the front end, so your audience
can explore the information in various ways, or query the system dynamically, without the need
for advanced skills.
From there on, you have an entire suite of visualization tools to help you put insights
in front of your clients:
- map layers with polygons, lines, and points, styled using data-driven rules,
- beautiful charts, from predefined templates or using advanced configuration,
- filterable and sortable tables that can render millions of rows without a flinch,
- dynamic data stories, with conditional text, images, maps, and data placeholders.
Put these in a dashboard or a spatial app and all the related data will synchronise as
if by magic. Parameters and filters will propagate and change the presentation automatically,
without you having to apply complicated settings. Mix and match your visualizations,
based on their intended audience, and publish via front-end apps to groups of users set up via
illustreets’ comprehensive user management system.