1 2 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply on Sep 10, 2018 6:25 AM by Donna Coles

    Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!

    Carolina de Mello e Souza

      Hello Tableau Community,

       

      The Dashboards team is working to improve your dashboard layout creation experience, and we would like to make sure we continue to support the ways in which containers work well for you today.

      Can you please tell us why and how you use dashboard containers today?

       

      Looking forward to your responses!

       

      Carolina de Mello e Souza

      UX Designer, Dashboards

       

      Phil Naranjo

      Staff Product Manager, Dashboards

        • 1. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
          Simon Runc

          hi Carolina,

           

          So I'm (and we as the wider company I work in) are a heavy container users!

           

          We pretty much layout all our dashboards within containers. The main reason for this is that we allow our dashboards to re-size (if you've got a big/hi-res screen we want you to enjoy that, but if you have a small/low-res screen we don't want to you to have scroll-bars). This means we never really use floating objects, as we never know where they might end up as the screen re-sizes. This lets us fix the width/height of certain containers, so it's certain elements are still visible across different screen sizes.

           

          Developing with containers is also much faster than "hand-placing" objects, as I see with a lot of dashboards, where the objects are all floated.

           

          I've attached a quick gif, showing a typical dashboard, where you can see how many containers we use, and where.

           

          We also use the containers to create a "tiled" layout, where we set the background colour of the dashboard to a gray, and then use border padding control on the containers (where we set the background to white) to create the "tiled" affect you see in the .gif

           

          As we've always used containers...we have got very used to how they work (the visual cues on what object is going in what container and how to combine them to make more complicated layouts...etc.); However I would say that this is probably due to our heavy use, and it took a while for their "nuances" to become natural.

           

          I think the "Distribute Evenly", and "Padding/Border" controls have been really great additions.

           

          Extra features we'd love...

          Not just distribute evenly, but %age distribution (eg. Worksheet 1 is always 60% and Worksheet 2 is always 40% of the width...so it responds to different screen sizes)

          Not just fixed width/height by a MAX/MIN width height (or better intelligence on how it re-sizes and distributes vizes around the dashboard). This would really help the re-sizing, where the fix we use is generally "the best compromise" (so can look odd on very small or very large screens)

           

          Hope that helps, makes sense...and (as always) happy to discuss further

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          • 2. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
            Ben Neville

            I'd like to echo Simon's ideas. Dashboard containers are almost solely used for layout purposes (hence Tableau's terminology of "layout containers"), most frequently sizing/scaling. A distant second would be to facilitate cascading sheets, which is in itself another layout/sizing need. The biggest gap I find at present is not being able to fix proportions as a percentage vs. a fixed pixel or distribute evenly. While I don't think this need goes away, I think it would be lessened with more intelligent scaling/sizing of sheets within dashboards. I should mention this seems to have gotten better every release, and 2018.2 sizes sheets much better by default than 9 or earlier 10.x versions did!

             

            For something a bit farther down my wishlist, it would also be nice to be able to "save" containers. Almost like nesting of dashboards, but on a smaller, modular level. Being able to save a vertical container that contains all of my filters/titles/text boxes/legends formatted the way I want. Title banners or footers with disclaimers or captions. Being able to save those components for re-use elsewhere would save some tedious re-formatting/sizing, and also ensure a consistent look and feel throughout the product.

            2 of 2 people found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
              Saikrishna Mamidi

              I suggest the below features

              1. Re Positioning of containers from Layout -> Objects Pane

              2. Copy paste of Objects

              3 of 3 people found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                Simon Runc

                Thanks Ben...yes good point on cascading.

                 

                One other "wish" I'd forgotten (well 1.5 as they are related!!)...while the border/padding has been great and added more control, it has come at the expense of time! It would be nice (and this goes for all objects) to select multiple objects and change all their border/padding together.

                 

                The other one is the ability to "duplicate" objects, and with the "copy" inheriting the format (border, padding, background colour...etc.) settings. (just seen Saikrishna has got that one..but I'll second it!!)

                2 of 2 people found this helpful
                • 5. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                  Joe Oppelt

                  I am floating objects all the way, and most times I do things in containers.  (If I have only one sheet to place here-or-there, I don't use a container.)

                   

                  I'm heavy into sheet swapping (so that's all in a container), and with that often comes the need to pop out filters and/or legends to match what gets swapped into view.  So, containers for that.

                  • 6. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                    Joe Oppelt

                    I really like the request for cut-and-paste of objects -- from one dashboard to another (if that wasn't the intent of the request.)

                    2 of 2 people found this helpful
                    • 7. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                      Joe Oppelt

                      I dislike a change that occurred in 10.4.

                       

                      When I pop out filters (to match swapped sheets), I used to be able to pop them out each one in separate containers positioned in exactly the same location.  When published to server, the user was able to "drill" to any popped filter, whether or not it was in the top container in the floating order.

                       

                      10.4 "fixed" that behavior, to my detriment, and only the topmost container in the floating order gets cursor access.

                       

                      I worked around that, but it's more tedious.  See this thread to describe the issue and workaround:

                       

                      Sheet popping behavior has changed in 10.5 (actually starting with 10.4)

                      • 8. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                        Joe Oppelt

                        Regarding cut-and-paste of objects, I hack that now by cutting the XML chunk that holds whatever I want to duplicate, and pasting it into the right XML section in the subsequent containers using Notepad.

                         

                        Not pretty, and certainly not supported.

                        2 of 2 people found this helpful
                        • 9. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                          Carolina de Mello e Souza

                          Hi Simon!

                           

                          Thank you so much for your detailed response and GIF! This is super helpful for us.

                           

                          Just to confirm: towards the end of your post, when you speak of feature requests, you say "Not just fixed width/height by a MAX/MIN width height". Did you mean to say "Not just fixed width/height but a MAX/MIN width height"


                          Would you be interested in testing/providing feedback on some new concepts we are exploring?

                           

                          Cheers,

                          Carolina

                          • 10. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                            Joe Oppelt

                            PS:  If you ever take away the capability to let containers have boundaries outside the actual dashboard (for instance, negative x- and y- coordinates) probably every one of my workbooks will die.

                            • 11. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                              Carolina de Mello e Souza

                              Hi Ben,

                               

                              Thank you for your response! We missed the end of your sentence:

                              "For something a bit farther down my wishlist, it might also be able to..."

                               

                              If you had something from your wishlist you wanted to share with us, we look forward to hearing it!

                               

                              Cheers,

                              Carolina

                              • 12. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                                Carolina de Mello e Souza

                                Hi Saikirishna,

                                 

                                We are thinking deeply about "Copy paste of objects". Stay tuned!

                                 

                                Thank you,

                                Carolina

                                • 13. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                                  Carolina de Mello e Souza

                                  Hi Joe,

                                   

                                  As I mentioned to Saikirishna above, we are thinking deeply at the moment about "Copy paste of objects". Stay tuned!

                                   

                                  Thank you for sharing that you use containers for sheet swapping, and for sharing a link to your post about the regression you saw in 10.4. Also, thank you for mentioning that all of your workbooks rely on Tableau supporting containers with boundaries outside the dashboard - we are working hard to make sure what we do doesn't break existing content.

                                   

                                  Best,

                                  Carolina

                                  1 of 1 people found this helpful
                                  • 14. Re: Do you use dashboard containers? We want to hear how you use them!
                                    Phil Naranjo

                                    Hi Joe -

                                     

                                    I'm wondering if you could tell us more about what you're doing with the negative dashboard space?  Curious to understand how it would affect your dashboards.  I know that some folks use Robert Rouse's clever solution for a panel that gets hidden in the negative dashboard space.  We're working on a simpler and more robust way to accomplish this.

                                     

                                    Thanks,

                                    --Phil

                                    Product Manager, Dashboard Applications

                                    1 of 1 people found this helpful
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