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Tableau – Data Types
  • Last Updated : 26 Nov, 2020
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Tableau is the easy-to-use Business Intelligence tool used in data visualization. Its unique feature is, to allow data real-time collaboration and data blending, etc. Through Tableau, users can connect databases, files, and other big data sources and can create a shareable dashboard through them. Tableau is mainly used by researchers, professionals, and government organizations for data analysis and visualization.

The data type classifies the data value into its definite type, some may be characters (eg- ‘Vansh’), some may be integers (eg- 108), and some may be floating type (eg- 1.854), etc. In this way, every data value lies under certain data types. Tableau too has a set of data types under which it classifies data value present in it as field values.

In Tableau, we have seven primary data types. The function of Tableau is to automatically detect the data types of various fields, as soon as the data is uploaded from the source and allocate it to the fields. These seven data types are:

  1. String values
  2. Number/Integer values
  3. Date values
  4. Date & Time values
  5. Boolean values
  6. Geographic values
  7. Cluster or mixed values

In Tableau, every data type is denoted by a specific icon is displayed in the table given below:

DATA TYPE



ICON

String Values
Integer Values
Date Value 
Date & Time Value
Boolean Value
Geographic Value
Cluster group or Mixed Value

Now let us discuss all these data types in detail:

i) String Data type: The collection of characters give rise to the string data type. A string is always enclosed within a single or double inverted comma. The samples of the string are — “Vansh”, “Hi! How are you?”, and “GeeksforGeeks”, etc. 

We can divide String data type into two types, Char and Varchar.

  • Char string type- Char data type normally stores alphanumeric data values having fixed lengths. If the user enters a string value which is greater than the fixed length of the Char data type, then the system returns an error.
  • Varchar string type- Varchar data type also stores alphanumeric data values. As the name suggests, Varchar stores data values having a variable length. So, the user can enter as many string values as they want, without facing any restriction from the system.

ii) Numeric Data type: This data type consists of both integer type or floating type. Out of which users prefer to use integer type over floating type, as it is difficult to accumulate the decimal point after a certain limit. It also contains a function known as the Round() function which can be used in rounding up float values.

iii) Date and Time Data type: Tableau supports all forms of date and time like dd-mm-yy, or mm-dd-yyyy, etc. And the time data values can be in the form of a decade, year, quarter, month, hour, minutes, seconds, etc. Whenever the user enters data and time values, Tableau automatically registers it under Date data type and Date & Time data value. 

iv) Boolean Data type: As a result of relational calculations, boolean data type values are formed. The boolean data values are either True or False. Many a time the result of a relational calculation is unknown, in this situation Null data values are used. 

v) Geographic Data type: All values that are used in maps, comes under geographic data type. The example of geographic data values is country name, state name, city, region, postal codes, etc. 

vi) Cluster or Mixed Data type: Sometimes data set contains values having a mixture of data types. Such values are known as cluster group values or mixed data values. In such a situation, users have the option either to handle it manually or allow Tableau to operate on it. 

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