Google Fusion Tables

Published on January 14th, 2011

Estimated Reading Time is 3 mins

This is my brief experience with Google Fusion Tables, a free service provided by Google.

Last week @mathalete had asked:

i've a csv file and I want to create a sexy chart from it, is there a charting tool I can upload into that's quick for me to do so?

I'd briefly looked at Google Fusion Tables before but never had a need to use it so I threw that over to Peter and conversation followed.

According to Google:

Fusion Tables is a service for managing large collections of tabular data in the cloud. You can upload tables of up to 100MB and share them with collaborators, or make them public. You can apply filters and aggregation to your data, visualize it on maps and other charts, merge data from multiple tables, and export it to the Web or csv files. You can also conduct discussions about the data at several levels of granularity, such as rows, columns and individual cells.

I then thought of a use. For the past couple of months, Praise Gathering registration has been open to the public. The registration process consists of a form (use Solspace Freeform module) that captures user info, name, address details etc. That info is then stored in the database and an email sent to admin. Fairly straightforward stuff.

From there a created an ExpressionEngine template using the CSVee plugin (generates a CSV based on a query) to output user data to CSV format. This is where Google Fusion comes in. I uploaded the CSV and mapped my city and postcode fields as locations and let Google do the rest. Here's the result:

Some of the data is a little off (some due to user input) but in the main it's pretty accurate. This allows the guys at Praise Gathering to see where they can focus efforts in advertising for new choir members for Edinburgh as we can see Bathgate is quite sparse.

If I were to do anything different, I'd probably add this little addon into the mix.

Happy to discuss methods, share code etc if needed or if you can better it I'm all ears grin

****All of this was done in ExpressionEngine 1.6.9***

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