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Tooltip Canvas in Tableau - A Mockup for Chart Functionality within Tooltips

Tooltips are a great tool for adding detailed elements to a visualization for a reader without cluttering a dashboard. Tableau has functionality to insert fields, calculations and many formatting options in the tooltips. Last year I posted a new idea to the Tableau Community. The idea is to allow more chart functionalities with the tooltips. Ideally, it would be a new canvas, where charts, maps, images, URLS, etc. could all be used on the canvas. I mocked up a dashboard with a sample of what a tooltip might look like. In this example, the U.S. Unemployment Rate by State is plotted on a Choropleth map. The concept here is that when a user moves the mouse over California for the tooltip, instead of getting the standard tooltip they would have another chart or set of charts embedded in the tooltip.

Here are just a few ideas on how this could be used.

   Sparkline or line chart showing the unemployment rate in California over time.
   Bar chart comparing CA to the top 10 or bottom 10 states.
   Bar chart with the rate in CA plotted with an average line for the U.S.
   Dot plot showing where CA fits in rank to the rest of the U.S.
   Images related to the State
   Embedded video in pop up window
   County breakdown showing a more granular view of the unemployment by county within the state.

There is a great post demonstrating an old trick used to create bar charts in Tableau here.

Unfortunately this technique only applies to creating bar charts in the Tooltips. Below is a mockup example of what this might look like using a canvas. In this example the tooltip shows the unemployment by county in California that would show when the user hovers over California. Notice the addition of a new button next to "Add Sheet" and "Add Dashboard" where a new Tooltip canvas could be added. Then the Tooltip canvas could be assigned to any tooltip based on the fields that are used in the chart or set of charts (dashboard).

Please consider voting for this idea here on the Tableau Community Ideas forum. If you have any questions feel free to email me at Jeff@DataPlusScience.com

Jeffrey A. Shaffer

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