- Ideas, tools, best practices about visual storytelling with corporate data - Ideas, tools, best practices about data storytelling

GeoFlow, a new Microsoft tool to tell data stories inside Excel

Posted on Wednesday, April 17th 2013

Available since last week and announced during PASS Business Analytics in Chicago, Microsoft GeoFlow is an Excel add-in to visualize data on 3D maps. Fine. But it’s also a data storytelling tool as stories can be recorded, replayed and shared.

Main functions of GeoFlow go around putting data on a 3D map and navigating/playing with data in real time. Data can come from Excel of PowerPivot data model. And GeoFlow will be a leading tool to visualize geographic data in a 3D environment.
Data can be visualized trough heat maps, plots or columns.
Labels can be added during exploration to share information with other people.
Temporal axis can be played to see the rest of data evolving during the time frame.

To create a story you can capture a scene, and share this moment with your peers. That’s the basis of data storytelling; all data analysis tools should be able to do in their next version: not just recording dead moments, like with a screenshot, but living scenes. Not only the result of an analytical process but the process itself.
And with GeoFlow you can mix data scenes into a "data tour". Actually, GeoFlow is an Excel tool, but tomorrow PowerPoint should be able to include these data tours.

Do you remember the old times when your parents or grand-parents organized slide shows with a slide projector at the center of their living room to share again and again their travel memories from Rome… It have been replaced by Super 8 and video… except during corporate meetings where you continue to share… slides… dead moments…

Data Storytelling will change all this! And GeoFlow could be part of this evolution. It requires Microsoft Office 2013 Professional Plus or Office 365 and can be downloaded for free here

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