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Engine Works Blog

Under the hood of Alteryx: tips, tricks and how-to's.
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Creative Director
Creative Director

Part 1

It's building time in 'alteryx-ese'

first we download data and P-N-Gs

 

Prep and blend, sort and join a breeze.

Community put the gifts under Christmas trees

 

#SANTALYTICS  is in full swing and Part 1 is in the books. We had 12 community members solve part 1 and they each did it their own way. We offered 2 different options for downloading the data and Option 2 was the more popular route.

Community Member Option
@patrick_digan 1
@ggruccio 2
@LordNeilLord 2
@Sruhl 1
@BarnesK 2
@Claje 1
@EstherB47 2
@NicoleJohnson 2
@samN 2
@Ilías 2
@paul_houghton 1
@MarqueeCrew 2

 

Option 1 or Option 2

 

We prefaced Option 1, Download the .zip file and extract using an Alteryx Workflow, as being more difficult, and maybe that left an impression to either do it that way or the other way, Option 2 - Download all the tools/images from a host location, but there is another element to think about here...from a workflow/data maintenance perspective...which way is the better way? 

 

Let's dive in to both options.

 

Option 1: Download the .zip file and extract using an Alteryx Workflow

 

Did you know you could Download a *.zip file and extract its contents in Alteryx? Well you can.

Our own, @MattD also took this approach using 7zip to extract the images from the zip file:

7zip-runcommand.pngA look at the RunCommand tool config using 7zip

Pros of Option one:

Less tools overall

 

Cons of Option one:

More dependencies ( bat file, scripts, 3rd party tools)

Option 2: Download all the tools/images from a host location

 

Yep that Download tool is pretty handy, being that it can grab blobs and then pass those blobs to a blog convert tool or an image tool, either or which can turn the blobs into a reporting snippet - 

@EstherB47@LordNeilLord@BarnesK@samN@Ilías went with the Blob Convert

and 

@ggruccio and @NicoleJohnson chose the Image tool.

 

What stuck out to me with these approaches was not the image handling, however, as much as the differences in the methods used to join the images to the Tool Data.yxdb. There were Append Fields, Joins, Unions, Find Replace tools and even some creative Transpose/Crosstab combos to get the data aligned.  And @MarqueeCrew 's use of Detours... huh?! Such fun!

 

Pros of Option 2:

Less 3rd party dependencies

 

Cons of Option 2:

More inputs, More tools - specifically more complicated joins

 

Our Solution

Our team tackled this both ways as well. In fact, we were at odds as to how to load the data. That is why we thought it would be interesting to give you guys the choice too.

 

Taking Option 1 looked like this:

Option1.pngWe solved Option 1 in two steps - the download and then the prep and blend

Taking Option 2 looked like this:

Option2.pngOption 2 - download and prep and blend

Mentionables

What's even cooler than seeing our community take on this icy cold fresh challenge? Experiencing the creativity - @patrick_digan and @EstherB47 took it to another level!

xmastree.pngpatrick_digan's wireless Christmas treecoldflow.pngEstherB47 's icy cool flow

 

The community team cannot wait to see what you all do with Part 2!!

Tara McCoy

Tara McCoy is the Creative Director at Alteryx. Since joining Alteryx in 2004, Tara has held roles in Product Management, Content Engineering, and Community where her focus has always been on delivering an amazing product experience with Alteryx. From designing product icons and community badges, procuring excellent swag, concocting engaging contests, and crowdsourcing content from internal and external Alteryx advocates alike, Tara is dedicated to the Alteryx brand and wants everyone to experience the thrill of problem solving with Alteryx.

Tara McCoy is the Creative Director at Alteryx. Since joining Alteryx in 2004, Tara has held roles in Product Management, Content Engineering, and Community where her focus has always been on delivering an amazing product experience with Alteryx. From designing product icons and community badges, procuring excellent swag, concocting engaging contests, and crowdsourcing content from internal and external Alteryx advocates alike, Tara is dedicated to the Alteryx brand and wants everyone to experience the thrill of problem solving with Alteryx.

Comments
Alteryx Certified Partner

Awesome recap @TaraM...thank you for doing this.

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