Explore Q bar

We can interact with Q by typing in questions into the Q bar.
Q bar is visible from almost all QuickSight screens. So, you can ask questions to Q regardless of whether you are at the landing page, viewing a dashboard, creating a dataset, designing an analysis or creating a topic.

For now, let’s interact with Q bar while still on the new topic page.
This will help us keep an eye on the indexing status.

Exercise 1 - Try using Q while it is still indexing

  1. Hover mouse over the topic name in Q bar and see the description show up.
    This is what your readers will see as well. So, be sure to include meaningful descriptions for the topics you create.
    If you already have access to other topics, you can select SaaS-Sales topic from the topic dropdown in Q bar. (Screen shot given further below)
  2. Click within the Q bar search box.
    This is the view that your readers will see when they choose this topic. Note that the description you provided also shows up at the top of the Q panel. A field list is provided as well.
    Try clicking the See all link to see the full listing of fields.
  3. Type in Show me total sal.
    If the indexing is still going on, Q will not offer any type ahead suggestions. Hit enter/return key to submit the query. Q will ask you what you meant.
  4. Type es at end of the question to make it Show me total sales and hit enter/return.
    Q is now able to show the total sales from your sample dataset.
  5. Try asking Show me total sales by product.
    Q is able to answer this as well.
  6. Now try asking Show me total sales for ContactMatcher
    Q doesn’t quite understand that ContactMatcher is a Product name yet and so will ask you what you meant. ie - You can use Q to answer basic questions while it is still indexing. Just that it is not quite able to help you with type aheads and won’t be able to associate category values to relevant columns yet.

Exercise 2 - Try same questions after indexing is complete

  1. Paste in Show me total sal
    Q now provides type aheads. Select sales from the choices to complete your question and hit enter/return key to submit the question.
  2. Paste in Show me total sales for Contact
    Q provides ContactMatcher as a type ahead suggestion. ie - it is not just looking at column names but also across all available categories within the columns. Select ContactMatcher and submit the query.
  3. Optional - The result looks good. So, let’s click thumbs up icon.

Exercise 3 - Explore restatement
Q provides a restatement of how it interpreted your question and gives us the flexibility to modify the restatement if needed.

  1. Modify the question to - show me monthly sales for ContactMatcher
  2. Note that Q provides a restatement of how it interpreted your question.
    sales for contactmatcher by month from dataset:SaaS-Sales
  3. Click on contactmatcher in the restatement and click Remove from answer.
    The chart is now showing monthly sales for all products. Note that the values are in 0 - 120K range.
  4. Click on month from restatement and change granularity to WEEKLY.
    Line chart now shows weekly sales for all products. Note that the values are in 0 - 40K range.

Exercise 4 - Explore improvement suggestions
As you make tweaks to the restatement, Q will offer to make those changes the default option so that your topic users can directly get the tweaked view. This is to help you configure the topic for your end users. We will see later how you can make this change directly from the topic as well.

  1. Click on sales from restatement and change Aggregation to MAX.
    Note the Y axis scale change and notification against the Improvement suggestions icon.
  2. Click on the Improvement suggestions icon. Click Save followed by X to close the suggestion.
  3. Ask Q - Show me weekly sales Note that restatement now shows maximum sales by default.
  4. Refresh your browser and Ask Q - Show me weekly sales Revert the aggregation change - Click on sales and change Aggregation to SUM. Click on the Improvement suggestions icon. Click Save followed by X to close the suggestion.
  5. Ask Q - Show me weekly sales Note that Q is now showing sum of sales again.
  6. Ask Q - Show me minimum weekly sales
    Users can always get the desired aggregation by asking for it as well.

Exercise 5 - Explore visual types
Q displays the results using the visual type best suited to convey the information. Q further gives you the flexibility to view result in other visual types.

  1. Ask Q - Show me monthly sales for ContactMatcher compared to Big Ol Database
  2. From top right of Q panel, Click Visual icon. Try clicking other visual options therein.
  3. Click the legend/axis menu and try swapping fields. Note that you can set the sort order as desired as well.
  4. Explore the data download options by clicking the ellipsis / … icon.

Exercise 6 - Mark / Unmark as reviewed
Topic owners can mark answers as reviewed. When the question is asked again by anyone, Q will show the result along with a reviewed badge to give added confidence to the user. Topic owners can also use this to have Q display the result in a visual type of their choice. Reviewed questions will also show up in the Q bar as sample questions to help your end users get familiar with the topic faster.

  1. Select Vertical stacked bar from visual type selector.
  2. Resubmit the last question.
    It should still be in Q bar. Click at the end of the question and hit enter/return.
    Note that even though you had changed the visual type, on asking the question again, Q returned the result as a Line chart.
  3. Change the visual type to Vertical stacked bar again.
  4. Click the Mark as reviewed link.
  5. Resubmit the question.
    Note that Q now has a reviewed badge alongside the restatement. Also, Q displayed the result as a Vertical stacked bar per the selection you made in earlier step.
  6. Clear the question by moving mouse to the right end of Q bar and clicking the x icon that appears therein.
    Note that the reviewed question now shows at top of the suggested questions, followed by other recently asked questions.
    In case the reviewed question is not shown with reviewed badge in the question drop down, refresh your browser and try again.

Exercise 7 - Add question variants
Let’s say your users are used to referring to the above chart as ContactMatcher vs Big Ol Database. You can enable Q to return the same response by adding this as a question variant.

  1. Click Q bar, pick the reviewed question (that we added in last exercise) from suggested question list and submit it.
  2. Click Edit question variants.
  3. Click + Add new variant, paste in ContactMatcher vs Big Ol Database and click Save variant button.
  4. Clear the question in Q bar and submit ContactMatcher vs Big Ol Database therein.
    Note how Q links it to the reviewed question and brings back the reviewed response.

Exercise 8a - Explore feedback option

Q lets topic users provide feedback and channels it to topic owners. Let’s pretend to be a topic user, ask a question that Q can’t answer currently and provide a negative feedback.

  1. Ask Q - Show me quota for next year
    There is no quota information available in the dataset. So, Q asks what quota means.
  2. Search for quota.
  3. Click Skip this term.
  4. Click Tell the topic owner button.
  5. From What didn’t look right?, choose Disambiguation didn’t provide option I wanted.
  6. In custom message box, paste in I’m not able to get quota details for next year.
  7. Click Send button.

Exercise 8b - Explore feedback option
Let’s leave negative comment for one that Q answered as well. We will circle back to these negative feedback later.

  1. Ask Q - Show me monthly product sales chart Q returns the info in a table format.
  2. Click thumbs down button and Leave a comment, tell us what’s wrong
  3. Select Graph type was wrong in What didn’t look right?.
  4. Paste in Want to see this as a vertical stacked bar in the message box. Reader can definitely see the stacked bar option by just changing the visual type. We are still putting in this comment just to circle back to it from author view later on.
  5. Click Send button.