Kinetica Geospatial Visualization for Tableau

Kinetica offers a geospatial visualization extension for Tableau that allows users to visualize maps from Kinetica-hosted datasets. There are four integral parts to this extension:

  • The manifest file, KineticaTableauMapExt.trex
  • A Tableau instance (Tableau Desktop, Tableau Online, or Tableau Server are all applicable)
  • A Kinetica instance
  • An extension server that connects the Tableau extension to Kinetica

This document will walk through installation and configuration of the extension within your Tableau instance.

Prerequisites

First, you'll need to decide between using the public or the private/internal extension server. Whichever is selected, Tableau requires that the extension server be configured for SSL. The public extension server is provided by Kinetica, does not require your own database instance to use, and already has SSL configured. If using the public extension server, there's nothing to configure or setup.

The private/internal extension server relies on your own Kinetica instance and database login information. If using the private/internal extension server, you'll need to ensure that it's setup for SSL connections. See the Private installation instructions for more information.

Next, you'll need to make sure the manifest file is available locally. The extension file can be downloaded from the following locations:

  • the Kinetica documentation site (click here )
  • the Tableau extension gallery

Last, ensure you've met the following additional prerequisites:

  • Access to a running Tableau instance

  • Access to a running Kinetica instance (if using the private extension server)

  • (Optional) JDBC / ODBC connection between Tableau and Kinetica

    Tip

    Download the JDBC JAR from GitHub and follow the Tableau connection guide to set up a JDBC connection. Visit the SQL Connector page for information on setting up an ODBC connection. Note that ODBC may have better performance than JDBC but is incompatible with macOS environments.

Extension Installation

Public

If using the public extension server, download the .trex file and install the extension in your Tableau environment using the Use Dashboard Extensions documentation.

Private

If using the private extension server:

  1. Download the .trex file .

  2. In a text editor, edit the .trex file to update the source location URL for the private extension server URL, e.g.:

    <source-location>
      <url>https://<hostname>/tableau/</url>
    </source-location>
    

    See Determining the Kinetica Connection URL for the value to use to replace <hostname> above.

  3. Install the extension in your Tableau environment using the Use Dashboard Extensions documentation.

Configuration

Once the extension has been loaded, you may configure it via menu options. Configuring for demo mode is slightly different than configuring for a Kinetica instance, but you can always switch to the other option as needs change.

Demo Mode

  1. Open the drop-down menu for the extension.
  2. Click Configure....
  3. For the Demo Mode, select Enabled.
  4. Click Save Configuration.

Kinetica Instance

  1. Open the drop-down menu for the extension.
  2. Click Configure....
  3. Add a Username and Password for a user that is able to access the database.
  4. Optionally, for the XYZ Basemap Tile Service URL, add a custom basemap URL.
  5. Leave Demo Mode as Disabled.
  6. Click Save Configuration.

Tip

You can opt to enable Demo Mode even when using a Kinetica instance to have access to the demo tables.

Usage

To update the map:

  1. Click Map Settings in the top right corner.

  2. Select a Table.

    Tip

    If Demo Mode was enabled, there will be a few demo datasets available for use.

  3. Update the settings as necessary.

  4. Click Update.

Use the scroll wheel on your mouse or the controls in the top left corner of the map to zoom in and out. Click the map to see records near that click.

Tip

If using a ODBC / JDBC connection in conjunction with the extension, you can filter the data in the dashboard and see those filters reflected in the extension map.