Geocaching Analytics – Part 4: GCInsight Visualizations with Power Map

Previously, we used various tools to download a copy of our Geocache data from geocaching.com and use a one-time SSIS package via the data import wizard to import that data into a SQL Server database.

Now the fun begins and we can play with some visualizations!  First up, we’ll play with Microsoft’s brand new Power Map functionality for Microsoft Excel.

Power Map is part of the suite of tools which Microsoft has named the Power BI suite.  The Power BI tools, such as Power Map are available in two flavors — on premise and cloud-based as part of Office 365, both of which utilize Excel 2013 Professional Plus.

One interesting note is that Microsoft is attempting to drive traffic to the Office 365 subscription flavor of Power Map over the standalone version.  As such, the standalone version is technically called “Power Map Preview for Excel 2013” but the functionality is the same between both.  The standalone version was originally to be time limited and stop functioning after 5/30/2014, but that limitation has since been removed.

First thing’s first — ensure that you have Power Map (or Power Map Preview) downloaded and installed.  After installing, we’ll need to go into the Excel addins and enable it (as well as PowerPivot which is another tool we’ll use for managing our data)

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