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MicroStrategy Dashboard Widgets – Interactive Bubble Graph

By on March 21, 2015 in Tips, Tricks and Technology with 0 Comments

An Interactive Bubble graph widget helps visualize trends of three metrics for a set of attributes in the form of a bubble plot.

It can be an apt replacement for a Heat Map if you need more interactivity. While Interactive Bubble Graph provides a time slider which adds to the interactivity level (explained below), Heat Map gives a static view for the metrics.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Minimum of 1 attribute along the rows
  • Minimum of 3 metrics along the columns

To make the best use of this widget, it is recommended to include two attributes with a minimum of three metrics. The first attribute should be from time hierarchy to make use of the time series slider that differentiates it from other widgets.

This widget is available in Flash, Interactive and Express mode. However, the editable features ( Enabling Time series slider, enabling drilling etc.) is only available in Flash and Interactive mode.This widget cannot be viewed/edited in Editable mode.

Use Case

We will be considering the following use case to support the working of an Interactive Bubble graph.

As per the minimum requirements mentioned above, consider the following grid:

Figure 1 - Grid

Display on the Widget:

  • Each bubble represents an attribute element
  • Position of a bubble on the X-axis is based on the first metric
  • Position of a bubble on the Y-axis is based on the second metric
  • Size of the bubble depends on the third metric

Figure 2 - Interactive Bubble Graph, Hidden Controls

Interactivity Controls:

Figure 3 - Interactive Bubble Graph, Controls

  • Interactive features in this widget allows a user to change the metrics displayed on any of the axis on the fly. The metric that decides the size of the bubble can also be changed.
  • Time series slider either allows to change the value manually or by playing the time slider animation. To support the time series the leftmost attribute should be an attribute from time hierarchy
  • Hovering over a bubble provides details of the metrics and attributes
  • A particular part of the visualization can be zoomed by selecting that area using the lasso, so that it can be viewed clearly out of the clutter. In the above visualization, one or two bubbles can be selected to view only those regions

Figure 4 - Lasso Selector

Figure 5 - Selector Zoom Result

  • Drilling can be enabled to view the underlying data of a particular bubble. Here the parent bubble(Region) can be clicked upon to view the corresponding call center(child attribute). Drilling can be enabled or disabled using the interactive features.

Points to remember:

  • To support both Time series and drilling, there should be at least three units on the row axis. An attribute from Time hierarchy should be the leftmost attribute.
  • For drilling considerations, the child attribute should be placed on the right of the parent attribute.
  • Most of the interactive features mentioned above can be enabled or disabled based on the user’s choice via Web.


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