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Data visualisation is never better demonstrated than when real and meaningful data is used. What strength and conditioning coach cares about financial performance, trial balance, the manufacture of widgets, or customer demographics? Instead, your own data can demonstrate how intelligent use can enhance the monitoring and decision making process.

At just over the halfway point of the Sochi Winter Olympics, I thought it worth looking at a few of the online data visualisations available from some of the main software providers. Almost everyone is using the Winter Olympics for marketing purposes; data visualisation and analysis companies are no different.

So here are three interactive data dashboards based around the Sochi games. Click each title to use the dashboard for yourself.

User training: as with all of these dashboards, when you see something that takes your interest, be it a year, type of medal, sport or athlete, simply click that piece of data. Everything will recalculate based on your selection. Click the selection again to remove it.

Olympic Medal History

Tableau_WinterOlympics_Dashboard_sml

From Tableau Software, this single screen dashboard visualisation or “viz” includes participating countries, historical medal achievements, athletes and disciplines. Data is not refreshed through the current games, but is great for historical detail.

Global Games – Winter Edition

QV_GlobalGames_Dashboard_sml

From QlikView, this multi-tab dashboard shows comprehensive data on historic games, medals, athletes and events. There’s even an interesting analysis of medalists characteristics, specifically body composition. The data is periodically updated through the current games, allowing comparison with historic data, as well as drilling into interesting facts about Sochi.

I particularly liked the use of maps for medal totals, and the event calendar for Sochi.

Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games

MicroStrategy_Sochi2014_MedalBoard_sml

From MicroStrategy, a multi-tab dashboard with a distinctly US focus. There’s a good mix of historic and current games’ data, with event, athlete and medal details. Medal predictions based on GDP and population were a particularly unique feature. There’s an event schedule for Sochi, plus an up-close and personal view of Team USA 2014 with athletes and their home towns and states.

 

As with all data visualisation tools, they do the same thing, just in different ways. I welcome your comments on which of these demos delivers you insights you didn’t expect, either through data or the visualisation/use of the application.