5 Replies Latest reply on Aug 13, 2014 12:17 PM by Joe Oppelt

    Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.

    Toby Erkson

      I'm writing up documentation for my users and want to use the right terminology.  Are there any key differences between a visualization versus a report or workbook?  I understand what a dashboard is versus a worksheet.  However, these other terms seem to be used interchangably and I wonder if such usage is correct.  Any additional syntactical usage welcomed.

        • 1. Re: Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.

          This is how I interpret these terms:


          Visualization is the same as a view, and both can refer to either a sheet or a dashboard. Essentially it is something that is self-contained and a person is looking at it as a whole thing.

          Workbook is a bunch of views, usually related.

          Report can mean either a single view or the whole workbook. This is the vaguest and the most subjective term out of these three.

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          • 2. Re: Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.
            Shawn Wallwork

            What Dimitri said. But for me "report" is something that gets printed on paper and handed out; doesn't really have anything to do with data viz.

            • 3. Re: Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.
              Russell Christopher

              "Viz" is/was sort of an insider "cutesy" way of referring to either a worksheet or dashboard - it is a way the Jedi can secretly identify themselves to others in the room without using fancy hand signals or wearing funny clothing.


              Ironically, some of our competitors seized on this term as proof that we're "only a visualization tool", which I find kind of funny / sad. You generally should not use the term "viz" with the uninitiated. You'll just confuse 'em.

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              • 4. Re: Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.
                CeCe Orquieza

                I have the same thoughts as Dimitri, in Tableau terms, I see visualization as the sheet in Tableau, the report could possibly be the Dashboard that is compiled but with an added Analysis or an actual report summary of the visualization. There's also another discussion regarding report vs. analysis. Sometimes report could just be the data that's given to someone and a full 'Report Analysis' includes insight of the reported data which may or may not be part of a dashboard or a visualization of the data. Good question.

                • 5. Re: Terminology - viz vs. report vs. workbook etc.
                  Joe Oppelt

                  If anyone is into scrapbooking (I'm not, but I can visualize what it is), what we do in Tableau is like that.


                  You take a photo (a sheet) and maybe you modify it a bit with photoshop or some other tool (format), and then you paste it onto a scrapbook page (a dashboard) and put decorations around it (legends, text, borders) and maybe add some words to explain the page (titles, captions, summaries, annotations).  Sometimes we even make the page interactive like a pop-up story book (actions, pop-up sheets, conditional displays).


                  Now try putting THAT into your user doc!