9 Replies Latest reply on Jul 6, 2017 11:33 AM by Michael Hesser

    Viz Challenge: Graphing Pocket Change for IKEA Cat Toys

    Michael Hesser

      Being a Monday, I thought it might be a good day for a simple viz challenge. I'm going to confess: this one puzzled me for far, far longer than it should have: hopefully it won't be so tricky for you!


      Premise: I'm a big collector of found change (you know: those pennies you see in gas station parking lots-- I'm the guy that takes time to pick them up).

      Anyway, I throw them in a jar until I have enough to buy new toys for the cats (I get the ones from IKEA-- they're about $1.06 with tax).


      I want to make a Tableau viz that meets the following criteria:

      • Shows total $$ of found change
      • Shows total $$ by coin type
      • Shows a stack of each coin type
        • the height of the stack is equivalent to the total value of the coin type (in the initial display, at least)
        • additionally, the stack is broken into individual segments (so if I have 4 quarters, the stack is broken into 4 segments)
      • Bonus features:
        • the size of each stack varies roughly by coin value (so the stack of quarters is broader than the stack of pennies).
        • it would be nice to be able to switch views so the stack height doesn't represent total value but total number of coins. Maybe I'll publish a paper on the probability of people stooping to pick up dropped change...
        • Since I have 2 cats, I really shouldn't make the trip to IKEA unless I can get 2 toys, so the viz should tell me if I have at least $2.12 available.


      The viz needs to utilize a very simple Excel file consisting of a single column called COIN

      Each time I find a new coin, I append it to the list. Right now PENNY is listed 16 times, NICKEL is listed 11 times, QUARTER is listed 4 times. I don't have any dimes, half dollars, or doubloons for that matter.

      There is no unique ID or index on the list (no fair adding it). Nor is there a value associated with the COIN type.

      Final result should look something like this:


      Whaddya think? Too easy?