IronViz is Tableau's premier public participation data visualisation contest.  At each Tableau Conference, in Europe and in the USA, three contestants fight it out to build the best visualisation using a pre-defined dataset - in only 20 minutes!  In order to get there a series of three feeder competitions are held - the winner of each getting a place on the finals stage.

This is the first time I've entered the competition - we're currently at the second feeder competition stage and the theme is music.  Perhaps the hardest part is finding some data that allows you to tell a compelling story.  I was fortunate in that after a short amount of time on Google I came across a Tableau visualisation made by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).  Thankfully the author allowed me to download the visualisation and the data.  The dataset was comprehensive and I knew I could make a good story out if it.  So, in fact this IronViz entry is also a kind of #MakeOverMonday.  Take a look at the original here:

Let's be clear, I started this not wanting or expecting to win - but to allow me to get slightly more creative than I would ordinarily be able to do on client sites.  I wanted to tell a story and present the data in a long-form way (i.e. not a massively interactive visualisation) that was visually compelling and also had a lot of commentary along side it.  I also wanted to be able to try out techniques that I'd not used before, and having taken design inspiration from other members of the Tableau Community - wanted to deploy my version of these design techniques.


Here's what I came up with:  



It's on Tableau Public here:!/vizhome/IronVizEntry-Music/RIAAMusicRevenues and freely available to download.


Good luck to all the IronViz entrants - can't wait to see the selection of entries.  Perhaps there's a blog post comparing and contrasting to come...  Check out for more information about IronViz


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