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Data Visualization

Community Dashboards: Popular Holiday Toys Across Time

We love highlighting the fun ways that MicroStrategy Community members use our technology to bring data to life—especially when we can learn something from them. Last month, in a fit of holiday spirit,  MicroStrategy user Len O’Toole created a dashboard that looks at the most popular holiday toys since 1983.

Using a publicly available dataset from Statistic Brain, Len pulled together information on toy price, popularity, and the percent of households that purchased the toy for years between 1983 and 2015. Using MicroStrategy Desktop, he built a multi-sheet dashboard that analyzes the data, lets us take a trip down memory lane, and is wrapped with a holiday-themed design to get user into a more festive state of mind.

This dashboard was created by MicroStrategy user Len O’Toole using publicly available datasets.

The dashboard allows users to explore how toy preferences have changed over the past three decades. Overall, the cost of each year’s "most wanted toy" has been trending upwards since 1983. In the ‘80s and ‘90s, the average toy was generally between $35 to $75. In contrast, since 2000, the average price has trended upwards to $140. The dashboard also shows us that many of these gifts have gone out of style. The PalmPilot, for example, was the most popular gift in 1997, but is now a technology of the past. Click here to interact with O’Toole’s dashboard in the cloud, or download the .mstr file to play with the data on your own.

When we asked Len what advice he had for fellow dashboard fanatics, he said “always keep your audience in mind.” While he enjoys the design aspect of dashboard creation, he says it is “critically important that we remember that UI design should always be secondary to the data and analytical workflow of a dashboard.”

Want to have your own dashboard featured on the MicroStrategy blog and in our community? Click here to share your work with us. If you aren’t using MicroStrategy Desktop yet, download it for free to get started with easy-to-use data discovery.

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