Overview: The goal of this tutorial is to introduce you to formatting a default Visual Crossing map and then doing some simple geographic analysis using trade areas. We will start with a dataset of store points and customer points. This dataset contains two measures, sales and profit. When asked to map this dataset Visual Crossing will automatically create an initial map for us that shows our customer and store points color-coded based on their measure values. After briefly exploring this map, we will then edit the formats and labels before beginning a trade area analysis using the Visual Crossing Location Info functionality. This analysis will allow us to geographically see the reach of our stores based on the distance that customers travel in relation to the revenue that those customers bring to the store.
Note for returning users: If you have already installed the Visual Crossing Extension for SAP Lumira and imported the tutorial data previously, you can simply begin a new visualization based on your existing data. If that is the case, you may jump directly to step #10. If you are new to Visual Crossing in general or to the Visual Crossing tutorial series specifically, please begin with step #1 below.
Installing the Visual Crossing Extension
You must have the Visual Crossing Extension for Lumira installed before beginning this tutorial. If you have not already installed it, please follow the steps in our quick installation guide here:
If you do not already have the Visual Crossing tutorial data Excel sheet, please download it from here:
To load a new dataset choose your preferred Data Source from the list at the top of the Lumira home page. For this tutorial we will use a Microsoft Excel Data Source.
Browse to the folder where you saved the Visual Crossing Tutorial data and select the data file named LumiraTutorialCustomerTransactions.xlsx and click the Open button:
The preview window will show you a sample of the data. Click the Visualize button to accept the defaults and create a new dashboard. Lumira will read the data from the sheet and import it into our new project.
NOTE: In older versions of Lumira you were required to modify the lat/long format values to have 5 digits of precision after the decimal. In Lumira Discovery this is no longer required as our extension has access to the unformatted data and will use that for its location plotting.
Creating & Using layers
Preparing for Mapping
Before we can create our map, we have to do a series of tasks to enable the dashboard for using the Visual Crossing Map Extension. We will start by switching the default visualization to a the map visualization. Start by selecting the default visualization and clicking on the icon to Change Chart Type.
Select the Visual Crossing Map extension
After the map visualization is chosen, you may now opt to resize the visualization to fit the dashboard. For our tutorial we have resized it to fill the entire screen.
In order to drag data onto our map visualization we must first enable the Lumira Feeding Panel. To do this simply choose the Maximize option from the visualization context menu. Make sure the visualization object is selected and highlighted in order to make the context menu visible.
You should now see the feeding panel as pictured below.
We can now drag our measures and dimensions onto the feeding panel. For this tutorial, we will add on the following dimensions: Zip, Store ID, Store Name, Store Latitude and Store Longitude. Also add the following measures: Profit, Sales.
This is done by navigating to the DESIGN section of the side panel and clicking on the Set Visualization Properties icon.
Our last preparation step will have us register the map extension property with the dashboard. This allows the map extension to save all properties of the map in the dashboard itself. This eliminates the ned for storing the maps separately to the dashboard.
Once you click on this icon, the system will automatically register the property for the map and create two buttons: Save map and Clear map. This is also evidence that you have successfully linked your map to the dashboard.
Now we can begin to format the map. In your visualization window, you should see the Layer Designer dialog from which you can construct map layers from your dimensions.
Drag over Zip to the GEOGRAPHY section to start creating our first layer.
When you added Zip, the system tried to guess what geometry you would like to join to. When it cannot find a match, it gives the user the option to configure it. For polygon layers, we will need to do this configuration manually.
Choose to Select a known geometry to pick from a list of shapefiles/geometries.
Now select USA_zipcodes to join to our Zip dimension.
Now that we have selected the geometry, we can fill in the COLOR BY and LABEL sections by dragging over the measures or information fields. We will color this map by both measures and label by Zip. (NOTE: You can edit all of this information later and create rich labels with more information.)
To finish our first layer and see what we have created, click on the Create Map
You can now see the map of zip codes color themed by your measures. To change the map view to display your other measure, simply select the name of the measure in the legend to change to a new measure.
We will now add a second layer to our map: To do this first open the Layer Designer by choosing the icon from the navigation bar on the map.
With the Layer Designer open again, click Add layer… to start a new layer.
As we did with Zip, drag StoreID into the GEOGRAPHY This time we will not configure this geometry manually, instead we will drag over Store Latitude as well. You can see that the system identified your new layer as being a Lat/Long layer.
NOTE: The system will use the non-geographic field as the Key to the layer and it is important that you choose a key that is unique to all entities in that layer. StoreID is perfect for our usage here.
Complete our geography selection by dragging Store Longitude to the Longitude section of the GEOGRAPHY.
As we did with Zip, we will choose our COLOR BY and LABEL fields and drag them over. We will choose the same measures as before but we will choose Store Name as our Label and add one measure to the label field as well.
We can now finish our second layer by selecting the Create Map
You should see a map with two layers drawn: a zip code polygon layer and a store point layer on top of it.
Let’s take a moment to save our map and dashboard. First click the Save map button that we created when we registered the map. (NOTE: This is found in the DESIGN section under the Set Visualization Properties)
To finish the save, select the Save or Save As function from the Lumira Discovery toolbar.
We chose to save our dashboard locally and to name it VisualCrossing Lumira Tutorial. The combination of dashboard and map is now saved to the disk and the .lumx file can be share with others having both map and dashboard data together.
Visual Crossing has a very rich set of formatting tools to build the exact map you need. In this exercise, we will get you started by editing thematics, distributions and styles. We can start editing by choosing the Map Editor icon from the navigation bar on the right side of the map.
Once the editor opens you will see a list of layers that you had previously created plus a basemap layer for OpenStreetMap to show road level data.
We will start editing the StoreID layer by either clicking on the name STOREID or using the right arrow and choosing FORMAT. Both will take you to the same editor.
This will open our layer editor where we can determine what our layer will look like.
On our layer format editor, we can see that currently it is set to display as points, there are two measures that have sequences and a popup label has been defined. This was set up by us in our Layer Designer earlier in this tutorial. We can now choose to edit labels, measure distributions, point styles, heatmaps and more. For this basic tutorial, we will modify how the points look. To do this click on the Individual Points icon in the upper left.
We will now change the type of point as well as make the points graduated based on measure performance. Click on the Pushpin icon to change the type and use the sliders at the bottom of the editor to adjust the small and large values to draw at different sizes.
Click on the X to close the editor when complete.
Next, we will change the distribution and colors for a measure in this layer. To do so, click on the box of color values next to our measure-based sequence named Profit.
Now change the distribution method to Manual and the bin count to 3. We will also edit the min and the right side numbers to 0-1000, 3000 and 5000. (NOTE: when the range is set to continuous you can only edit the min value and the right side as the left side is controlled by the system to ensure continuity.)
For the final edit on this layer click on Choose colors… and pick a sequence for your points.
Close your editors and you should see that you have successfully edited your stores layer to be a different style, distribution and color.
Remember to save both your map and dashboard to preserve your work. Save using the visualization properties Save map button and the standard dashboard Save in Lumira.
We will complete this tutorial by showing you some basic analytics capability using selections. Open the Map Editor again as we did for the Editing section using the Map Editor icon navigation toolbar of the map.
Click on the search icon and type in ‘Dayton’ on the search bar to look for the Store named Dayton Mall.
From the results window, select SCL05365 Dayton Mall to choose our store and the system will automatically find it on the map and zoom to the location.
Open the editor again this time choose the Selections icon to open up our selection editor.
Select the Radius tool icon (dashed circle) as your selection tool and drag a radius from our store (Dayton Mall) to any point 8 miles in distance. (NOTE: If the radius is too big for your view, you may need to use the mouse scroll wheel or ‘-‘ icon in the upper right to zoom out slightly.)
After completing the radius drag, you will need to choose the selection target of Zip in the selection editor which will result in a selection of all zip code areas under the radius selection.
The system will count and aggregate all measure data for this area which we will analyze a bit later.
Zoom out so that the neighboring store is now visible as well. Make a similar radius selection on that other location. You should see two separate selections of zip codes by radius around our stores.
We can now use our selection tools to view the results. There are three main tools available: List export, Summary and Comparison. Each is represented on the toolbar in the selection editor.
Explore each tool to find the following data:
Export List- This is the list of all data selected from your cumulative selections.
Selection Summary – This is the aggregation of all measures for all selections made.
Selection Comparison – This analysis compares the aggregations of each individual selection and shows the data side-by-side for comparison. This tool also allows users to promote a selection to a layer for saving and later usage.
You have completed the basic Visual Crossing Tutorial for Lumira Discovery. If you have questions about these topics, more advanced questions or other platforms and versions please contact us at email@example.com or browse the documentation at http://support.visualcrossing.com.