Working with multinational clients has exposed us to the problem of localizing dashboard content. Often times organizations are required to leverage pre-computed language translations, or develop different dashboards using the same content in different languages. We knew there had to be a better way, so we set out to build InterWorks Translate. InterWorks Translate is a full featured language translation service, powered by Tableau's Analytics Extensions and Amazon Translate to produce a seamless translation service embedded directly inside of your Tableau dashboards with over 71 supported languages.
What it does
InterWorks Translate translates your underlying data source into whatever language you choose, allowing for quick language translation that does not require manual steps to localize content. Utilizing Amazon Translate allows for translation into 71 different languages in real time. Connecting to InterWorks Translate is as easy as adding the analytics extension to Tableau Desktop, Tableau Server, or Tableau Online, and building your calculations to translate your data!
To interact with our public demo, all you have to do is open up our hamburger menu and select a language to translate the dashboard to. The dashboard will then automatically translate all the underlying data (and visualizations) into the language of your choice!
How we built it
Utilizing our expertise in building Analytics Extensions, we leveraged services from Amazon Web Services to build a translation engine that is fully serverless and scales to exactly what you need. Utilizing open frameworks like Tableau's Analytics Extension, OpenAPI, and boto3 InterWorks Translate is compatible with any organizations AWS account and can be deployed, or utilized as a managed service.
Challenges we ran into
We ran into problems around performance within worksheets. InterWorks Translate leverages Tableau's table calculations to send calls to the analytics extension, and partitioning on these table calculations determines how API calls are sent to the service. The solution required us to dive in and develop a better understanding of the way Tableau partitions table calculations to maximize the amount of data being sent per API call.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We are really proud of the technical output of InterWorks Translate. The vision of the solution was delivered when we built out demonstration and realized how simple it is to offer this style of language translation directly inside of our Tableau dashboards.
What we learned
We learned how to connect the world of AWS to Tableau's dashboards and calculations. We had experience building Amazon SageMaker for Tableau and used that expertise to expand the Analytics Extension beyond the world of Advanced Analytics.
What's next for InterWorks Translate
We plan to productize InterWorks Translate and offer it to clients looking to localize Tableau dashboard content.