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Identify when aggregation is happening depending on filters' choices

Henry Heberle

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In a dashboard with numerous filters, a visualization may aggregate different levels of data.

For example, if we have 2 filters and the user selects All and All, aggregation would happen using all data.

If now, however, the user selects 1 value in each filter, aggregation might not happen anymore.

It is very confusing for the users given the very difficult visualization of Filters and the fact that depending on the selection of one filter, other filters may be influenced, and so on.

How can we inform users about which "points" in a visualization or which "visualization" contains aggregated values (e.g. showing Average instead of original 'single' value)?

The problem here is that sometimes they want to see Average, and sometimes they don't want to average. I.E., sometimes they need to select very specific values among 10 filters, sometimes they don't need that... they can average. Now, in the case when they need to see single values and not aggregation, how to guarantee that they know what they are doing and didn't forget to select one value per filter from those 10?

When they scroll down through a list of 10 filters or more, the view from Spotfire doesn't allow the user to Mind Map what has being selected and which ones are selected as All or multiple values were selected, etc.

Any tips for this problem? Many thanks for the extensive help you are providing in this community!

[Off] Suggestion

Filters could adapt to the layout instead of getting longer (or give the user the choice to select which layout they prefer). E.g. I would be able to see all the filters at once if they would spread all over the available space. This is just a suggestion, not really related to finding a solution of how to “inform users about aggregations”.


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This might not at all be applicable/suitable for your use case, but maybe you can use some axis - color, size... - to indicate the number of values. As a very trivial example, here's an example of using the count to color by (and also shown in the label), so green means there is only one value - red there are multiple values.


For the filter idea, it's a great idea - I strongly recommend that you create an idea for that in the TIBCO Ideas portal (https://ideas.tibco.com/ideas).

Also, just to make sure that you are aware of it, I assume you are aware of the filter summary at the bottom of the filter panel, which is a good way to get an overview of filtering:


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