Ryan Robitaille

"Dream Big and Dare To Fail"

Ahoy! I'm a data [hacker, engineer, artist, rebel, slayer, janitor, tool builder] who also dabbles in design (if you could call it that). Whatever goofy name-of-the-week you want to call it, I'm a problem solver.
I get shit done.

Data is quickly becoming the silent lifeblood of our modern society; I try to help it get from point A to point B, sometimes point A is an indecipherable mess, and sometimes point B is human understanding (but not both at the same time hopefully).

7 December 2012 14 Comments

Build Tableau Data Extracts out of CSV Files? More Python TDE API madness!

So here we have the 3rd in a series about using Tableau 8′s ‘Data Extract’ API to automatically create TDE files from various data sources without using the desktop client. This time we’re focusing on good ole’ Comma Separated files….

Get yo CSV on!

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4 December 2012 15 Comments

SQL Server Query to Tableau Data Extract LIKE A BOSS – Some more TDE API fun with Python & Tableau 8

Coming off the excitement of my last post about writing a simple bare-bones python usage of Tableau’s brand-new Data Extracts API from version 8.0 – I figured that it was time to build on that. Let’s take a step forward and get a little more complicated – AND a little more useful…. Let’s do this.

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2 December 2012 15 Comments

Building Tableau Data Extract files with Python in Tableau 8 – Sample Usage

If you were learning (and / or partying) with us at the Tableau Customer Conference 2012 in Beautiful San Diego – then you’ve probably been playing around with the Tableau 8 Beta over the past few weeks. Tableau 8 bring a whole new slew of features – INCLUDING 2 new APIs… I’m going to go over some sample Python usage for the new ‘Tableau Data Extract’ API…

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16 October 2012 6 Comments

Face Harvesting: Download your Facebook data for External Reporting and Visualization

I’m always on the lookout for cool new data feeds that I can mess with – as you can clearly see from some of the other posts on this site. Usually it involves some scripting, screen-scraping, system fiddling, and general madness – basically meaning that some people can get it to work, while others cannot. […]

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7 August 2012 1 Comment

Turning Guitar Tabs into structured Data. Silicon crunching Metal.

I’m always looking for data from unlikely sources, especially sources that are close to my own bizarre interests. Anyone who played guitar at one point or another has probably used tablature.
What if we scripted out a way to crunch through an old school tab text file, split it up in a logical way, and insert it all into a database for display / analysis…

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26 July 2012 2 Comments

Python Snippet: Sending HTML email with an attachment via Google Apps SMTP (or Gmail)

This is just one of those things that I had to do in a project (as part of a much bigger system), and wish I had it all laid out for me like this when I was writing it.

Here it is for your cut-n-paste hacking pleasure…

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17 July 2012 3 Comments

Cars, Computers and Software: Quick Tableau of data from my VW’s “On Board Diagnostic” (OBDII) port

Just a quick little one-off I did over the weekend while testing some stuff. I’ve been toying with a couple of USB>OBD2 adapters and some linux scripts for a few days in order to spec out and build a much-bigger car-based “data” project.

But in the meantime…

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5 July 2012 18 Comments

How to Harvest Facebook updates with Python, MySQL or SQL Server

Data Party! Most people focus on search.twitter.com (or automated pulls from their API) for data collection regarding the “pulse” on a particular topic or brand – they often overlook the fact that the public Facebook timeline can be a useful source of data as well. I’ll show you how to harvest it and store it in a database of your choosing for later analysis.

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3 July 2012 3 Comments

Get Some! Query MLB Gameday Data with OData and Tableau Public

Baseball. If is ANY sport in America that is “all about the data”, it’s baseball. Although we touched on this topic last year, I never really gave it its full round of posts that it deserves.

Well, finally that day has come – except now its even better…

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