By Ross Perez 10 Okt, 2010

Wednesday, November 10 is Six Education Day! As we release our newest creation, Tableau 6, licensed 6 Experts will be standing by at Tableau’s universal headquarters to field any questions you may have about it. We invite anyone—from data experts to the data-curious- to join us and learn everything you ever wanted to know about 6 but were too afraid to ask.

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Here are three questions that I have still yet to fully investigate, I have ideas, and at least partially explored them, but I do not have generic solutions.

1. Can you map both polygons and dots in the same pane and display the built-in map backgrounds?

2. If Tableau is supplied with all the necessary rows, can it recreate FOR loops with table calculations? (example loop code: )

3. What is the order of operations and where are these calculated (at database/or local): Ad-hoc groups, bins, Tableau user functions, calculated fields, table calculations, global/local/context filters, generated lat/long, filters on a table calculation or any other special considerations, and does it change when extracted to the data engine?

Hi Joe,

Thanks for your questions.

1. You bet! I think you have already done this, right?
2. Get back to you soon about that
3. See below....
1) Execute remotely: All context filters are lumped together to create a single temporary table upon which subsequent queries are performed.
2) Executed remotely: Calculated fields (non-table-calc), user filters, local/global filters (non-table-calc), bins and Ad-hoc groups.
3) Executed / filtered locally: table calculations, calculated fields based directly or indirectly on table calculations.
4) Executed / filtered locally: generated lat/lon (primary data source only).

This is a 5.2 question, but might also apply to 6.0. I just created a Calculation in the "Measures" window, but when I clicked OK to save it, it moved up to the "Dimensions" window and has a =ABC logo in front of it. I was expecting it to stay in the "Meaures" window.

If bins and Ad-hoc groups are executed remotely at the same time as Calculated fields (non-table-calc), why are they not available for use in calculated fields or able to be aggregated?

Can you please tell me why (sum([result pass]))/(sum([number of records])) is not a valid table calculation, but (sum([result pass]))/total(sum([number of records])) is?

What does "valid table calculation" means?

I can plot "sum([result pass])" and "sum([number of records])" individually.

Bins and ad-hoc groups are specially optimized calculations and they they aren't always built in a way that enables them to be referenced by calculations. In addition, the how the value are displayed and how the values are represented in the database sometimes differ. Since any calculation would have to use the database representation, it would be difficult to write a calculation that uses them. We're looking at ways to improve this in the future.


SUM([result pass])/SUM([number of records]) isn't a valid table calculation because it doesn't use any of the table calculation functions.
SUM([result pass])/SUM([number of records]) is simply a calculated field. You can create a field to represent this calculation by right clicking in the data window and selected 'Create Calculated Field...'. When you customize a table calculation, the result must also be a table calculation, which is why you get the error that it is not a valid table calculation.
Hope this helps.


Where you click to create the calculation doesn't matter. If a calculation results in a string value and doesn't use an aggregation function (SUM, AVG, COUNT, etc...) we will treat it as a dimension by default. If you'd like to treat it as measure by default, simply drag it down to the Measure window.

In one of the training videos it shows using Parameters and Calc to index your home's purchase price and year against Zillow's home value data (is my house underwater)? But it went by pretty fast. Also couldn't catch the calc and understand it. What's all the steps to do something similar?

Thank you

Hi Jeffrey,

The steps are really quite numerous, but if you look into this workbook here you can see all of the pieces working together. The key here is the Window_Avg being used to calculate over the entire set. E-mail us if you have specific questions about any of these pieces - As you look into the calculations, it should all make sense and replication should be relatively easy.