As the end of one year approaches and the beginning of a new year sneaks up it’s always good to take a moment (or 5) to reflect.

The Digitization Centre and UBC have seen a lot of changes, this year and over time. Our new portal Open Collections premiered this year and UBC turned 100.

What’s fun about reflecting at DI is you can see a visual of how everything has changed. One of the oldest buildings on campus is our home, the Irving K Barber (IKB) Center and we’re taking the opportunity to compare a few recent photos from in and around IKB, to some digitized photos from the UBC Archives!

Main Library circa 1942

IMG_20151125_114009

IKB now and in 1948

New_oldview

View from the lawn now and in 1973

Quad walker

We hope you enjoy!

If you enjoy this blog post make sure to check out UBC Library’s post on the changing library and the evolution of libraries at UBC. Also take a look at the UBC Archives Photograph Collection!

And have a Happy New Year from everyone here at the Digitization Centre!

 

Data can be hard to manipulate and translate into a user-friendly graphical format. In this blog post series we will review different data visualization tools that will help you unlock the insights hidden in raw data. More importantly, these tools will allow you to answer many business and market questions and tell a compelling story to partners, employees, customers, and investors.      

Tableau Public

Tableau was created with a very straightforward mission “To help people see and understand data.” In this manner, two computer science disciplines were brought together for the first time: computer graphics and databases. In fact, one of the minds behind Tableau is also a founding member of Pixar.

Tableau Public is a free service for Mac and Windows that lets anyone create and share interactive charts and graphs, maps and live dashboards. Designed for ordinary people, the software is very intuitive. No programming skills of any kind are required. Simply drag and drop data into the canvas and immediately start to see results and answer questions. For help, you can check Tableau’s online tutorial videos and live training.

Tableau is constantly adding new features and enhancing the experience based on users’ suggestions. It has recently released Tableau Desktop, Public Edition 9.2. The new version offers, among other things, Mapbox integration, allowing for great-looking map backgrounds, layers, and context.

Tableau Public offers 10 GB of storage space and works with data from Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, multiple text file formats, statistical files, and web data connectors. Moreover, it does a lot of the work for you in figuring out what the data type is. Per workbook, the limit is 10,000,000 rows of data.  

One thing to take into consideration is that once you publish a workbook to Tableau Public, anyone can view the data. However, you can disable the ability to download the workbook.

If you have a tablet, you can explore data with your hands with Vizable, Tableau’s free app.

Good news for students: You can get a free Tableau Desktop license if you are enrolled full-time at an accredited school anywhere in the world.

Take a look at the gallery to see the many ways in which people are using Tableau.

Google Fusion Tables

Fusion Tables is Google Research’s free experimental application for data management, integration, and collaboration:

  • Visualize hundreds of thousands of rows of data using charts, maps, and graphs.
  • Merge tables and/or combine with public data. Keep track of who owns what by specifying attribution for the data. 
  • Host data online and share it with others just like you do with Google Drive. Most tables are private by default. If not, you can disable the downloading option.  
  • Charts or maps hosted in Fusion Tables will automatically update when you improve your dataset.
  • Although programming skills are not necessary to use this tool, there is an API available for developers who want to build applications over Fusion Tables.

Fusion Tables’ ease of use is intermediate –definitely not as intuitive as Tableau– since mapping and dataset merging can require some effort. For help, a list of tutorials can be found here.

Fusion Tables supports a quota of up to 1 GB per user. You can import different file types including CSV, TSV, KML, Excel, and Google Spreadsheets. There are hard limits of 5,000 columns per table and 1 million characters per cell. For better performance, Fusion Tables recommends keeping the number of columns below one hundred and the total size of data in the row below 1 MB. 

An option to suggest new features is available on the website. However, no new features have been added since 2014.

Check the gallery to see what people are doing with Fusion Tables.

Applications & Software

Data can be hard to manipulate and translate into a user-friendly graphical format. In this blog post series we will review different data visualization tools that will help you unlock the insights hidden in raw data. More importantly, these tools will allow you to answer many business and market questions and tell a compelling story to partners, employees, customers, and investors.      

Tableau Public

Tableau was created with a very straightforward mission “To help people see and understand data.” In this manner, two computer science disciplines were brought together for the first time: computer graphics and databases. In fact, one of the minds behind Tableau is also a founding member of Pixar.

Tableau Public is a free service for Mac and Windows that lets anyone create and share interactive charts and graphs, maps and live dashboards. Designed for ordinary people, the software is very intuitive. No programming skills of any kind are required. Simply drag and drop data into the canvas and immediately start to see results and answer questions. For help, you can check Tableau’s online tutorial videos and live training.

Tableau is constantly adding new features and enhancing the experience based on users’ suggestions. It has recently released Tableau Desktop, Public Edition 9.2. The new version offers, among other things, Mapbox integration, allowing for great-looking map backgrounds, layers, and context.

Tableau Public offers 10 GB of storage space and works with data from Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, multiple text file formats, statistical files, and web data connectors. Moreover, it does a lot of the work for you in figuring out what the data type is. Per workbook, the limit is 10,000,000 rows of data.  

One thing to take into consideration is that once you publish a workbook to Tableau Public, anyone can view the data. However, you can disable the ability to download the workbook.

If you have a tablet, you can explore data with your hands with Vizable, Tableau’s free app.

Good news for students: You can get a free Tableau Desktop license if you are enrolled full-time at an accredited school anywhere in the world.

Take a look at the gallery to see the many ways in which people are using Tableau.

Google Fusion Tables

Fusion Tables is Google Research’s free experimental application for data management, integration, and collaboration:

  • Visualize hundreds of thousands of rows of data using charts, maps, and graphs.
  • Merge tables and/or combine with public data. Keep track of who owns what by specifying attribution for the data. 
  • Host data online and share it with others just like you do with Google Drive. Most tables are private by default. If not, you can disable the downloading option.  
  • Charts or maps hosted in Fusion Tables will automatically update when you improve your dataset.
  • Although programming skills are not necessary to use this tool, there is an API available for developers who want to build applications over Fusion Tables.

Fusion Tables’ ease of use is intermediate –definitely not as intuitive as Tableau– since mapping and dataset merging can require some effort. For help, a list of tutorials can be found here.

Fusion Tables supports a quota of up to 1 GB per user. You can import different file types including CSV, TSV, KML, Excel, and Google Spreadsheets. There are hard limits of 5,000 columns per table and 1 million characters per cell. For better performance, Fusion Tables recommends keeping the number of columns below one hundred and the total size of data in the row below 1 MB. 

An option to suggest new features is available on the website. However, no new features have been added since 2014.

Check the gallery to see what people are doing with Fusion Tables.

Applications & Software

Happy Holidays everyone!

Hope you are all enjoying the holiday break. We compiled a few items for your to peruse from our collections that run in the holiday spirit. Click on any image to see it closer or download it. Hope you enjoy!

photo1

Sequoia tree with Christmas lights in front of Library

 

photo2

Prospector Christmas 1902

photo3

The British Columbia Mining Record supplement. Christmas 1900

photo

Thesis Christmas Sheet music

 

photo5

And last but not least… Angry Santa Disrecorder

 

 

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