2/1/2022

Airtable And Tableau

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I have JSON data that I need to fetch on a schedule. I need to parse the JSON data into an AirTable or maybe Tableau for Invoicing and Reporting.

The data is from a shipping and fulfillment business. I need to tally up thousands of shipments I fulfilled for each customer over the week and generate invoices to send them. I’d also like to view reports on this data and run analytics and charting etc. in the future if possible.

I’m not sure if AirTable or Tableau is the better solution, or perhaps you have another suggestion?

Airtable And TableauAirtable And Tableau

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The Tableau Bridge enables you to publish dashboards to Tableau Online while maintaining live connectivity with any data source. In this article, you will use the Tableau Bridge to maintain data freshness in a published workbook by listening for changes in the underlying Airtable data.

The CData ODBC drivers offer unmatched performance for interacting with live Airtable data in Tableau Online due to optimized data processing built into the driver. When you issue complex SQL queries from Tableau Online to Airtable, the driver pushes supported SQL operations, like filters and aggregations, directly to Airtable and utilizes the embedded SQL engine to process unsupported operations (often SQL functions and JOIN operations) client-side. With built-in dynamic metadata querying, you can visualize and analyze Airtable data using native Tableau data types.

Connect to Airtable as an ODBC Data Source

If you have not already, first specify connection properties in an ODBC DSN (data source name). This is the last step of the driver installation. You can use the Microsoft ODBC Data Source Administrator to create and configure ODBC DSNs.

APIKey, BaseId and TableNames parameters are required to connect to Airtable. ViewNames is an optional parameter where views of the tables may be specified.

  • APIKey : API Key of your account. To obtain this value, after logging in go to Account. In API section click Generate API key.
  • BaseId : Id of your base. To obtain this value, it is in the same section as the APIKey. Click on Airtable API, or navigate to https://airtable.com/api and select a base. In the introduction section you can find 'The ID of this base is appxxN2ftedc0nEG7.'
  • TableNames : A comma separated list of table names for the selected base. These are the same names of tables as found in the UI.
  • ViewNames : A comma separated list of views in the format of (table.view) names. These are the same names of the views as found in the UI.

When you configure the DSN, you may also want to set the Max Rows connection property. This will limit the number of rows returned, which is especially helpful for improving performance when designing reports and visualizations.

Add Airtable Data to a Dashboard

  1. From a new workbook, click Data -> New Data Source -> Other Databases (ODBC).
    Select the CData Data Source Name (for example: CData Airtable Source).
  2. In the Database menu, select CData.
  3. In the Table box, enter a table name or click New Custom SQL to enter an SQL query. This article retrieves the SampleTable_1 table.
  4. Drag the table onto the join area. At this point, you can include multiple tables, leveraging the built-in SQL engine to process complex data requests.
  5. Click the tab for your worksheet. Columns are listed as Dimensions and Measures, which you can drag and drop onto the dashboard to create visualizations.

Set Up Tableau Bridge as a Service

Airtable And Tableau Definition

  1. In the Server menu, select Start Tableau Bridge Client.
  2. Sign in to the Tableau Bridge using a site admin level account.
  3. If prompted, select the Tableau Online site where you want to publish live data. The bridge client will open and is accessible from the system tray.
  4. By default, the Tableau Bridge client is set to Application mode. Select 'Switch to service' to enable Tableau Bridge to handle live connections.
  5. Log in to your Tableau Online site as an administrator.
  6. From your site, click Settings, then Bridge.
  7. In the Bridge settings, under Enable Clients to Maintain Live Connections, check the box labeled 'Enable Tableau Bridge clients to maintain live connections to on-premises data.'

Publish a Dashboard Containing the Live Data Source

Having configured both the Tableau Bridge and Tableau Online to enable live data connections, you can now publish your workbook to Tableau Online. From the Server menu, select Publish Workbook.

After choosing the workbook name and project that you wish to publish to, configure the deployment so that the CData ODBC driver for Airtable is embedded in your workbook as a separate, live data source.

  1. Under Data Sources, select the option to Edit the embedded data sources in the workbook.
  2. Change Publish Type to 'Published separately,' then select a desired means of authentication.
  3. Last, select 'Maintain connection to a live data source' and click the green Publish Workbook button.

Airtable And Tableau Technology

Airtable and tableau tutorial

Airtable And Tableau Examples

The published workbook now updates alongside the underlying Airtable data. From a published dashboard, simply click the Refresh button to reflect the most recent changes.