Who is the Dashboard Spy and what is he all about? Here is how he likes to explain his once-secret, now emulated business dashboard design mission:
In the “good old days”, here’s how we wired together business intelligence systems.
In the future, this is how we will interact with digital dashboards.
The question is what do we do in the here and now? How about the visual at-a-glance approach of a dashboard? The face of business intelligence has been rapidly changed by the fast adoption of the dashboard design paradigm. We are literally making things up as we go along, but the dashboard seems to definitely be the new face of business intelligence.
But what does a good business intelligence dashboard look like?
Years ago, when first tasked to design and implement a business intelligence dashboard, The Dashboard Spy found that he simply could not find any examples of digital dashboards online. He started collecting his own dashboard examples. After a while, fellow B.I. practioners convinced The Dashboard Spy to post his examples on the web. The rest is history. The Dashboard Spy maintains the world’s largest collection of business intelligence dashboards, scorecards and BI interfaces.
The growing Dashboard Spy network of business intelligence web resources includes:
For years, The Dashboard Spy kept his identity a secret. He wanted to make sure that his business intelligence resources stayed ego-free and focused on the user-contributed dashboards. These days, due to popular demand, The Dashboard Spy has dropped his secret identity.
His name is Hubert Lee and he’s been busy networking. Contact him today if you want to chat about dashboards. Send him a LinkedIN connection invite using this gmail address: hubert321 (just add the “at gmail” part). Include a note in the invite letting him know you’re a Dashboard Spy fan.
If you’re in the NYC area, I’m sure you can convince The Dashboard Spy to join you for a gin and tonic.
Here are a couple of self portraits of the Dashboard Spy running around town.
Here are some nice comments regarding The Dashboard Spy:
Dashboard Spy Testimonials
“I found this guy and he is awesome! I have never seen so many dashboards. Anyone working on visualization and dashboards MUST go visit this site.”
“I must admit, while most people will find this very boring, I find this site fascinating because I actually spend a lot of time professionally trying to figure out how to present information to people in some useful summarized fashion. Nice work Dashboard Spy!”
“One of the hardest things about writing a good commercial application is making the thing look good. Ugly software can have every feature in the world, but very few people will bother with it. There’s a great site just about interfaces – specifically dashboards – called The Dashboard Spy. If you need some interface inspiration, give it a look.”
“Just who is this Dashboard Spy? Last November, in a post called “The Limitations of Dashboards” I wrote about my disappointment with the promise of electronic dashboards. But when I was about to waive the white flag, I found him. Who? The Dashboard Spy, that’s who. And who is this spy guy? Nobody knows, and nobody has to really care either (see spy bio at the end of this article if you really want the scoop). The point is, he introduced me to some very inspiring applications of what a dashboard can do for a nonprofit (or the community in general).”
“Designing a management dashboard is hard. It takes effort to choose the right 8 or so key metrics which represent the health and trajectory of your business. It takes good design skills to present these keys metrics in a simple, powerful format. Not being selective is easier, but much less useful. Many firms generate daily or weekly management “summary reports” overflowing with hundreds of statistics. In two of my former jobs, the weekly management report spanned multiple pages and had no graphs, just columns of 10 pt text. When you’re thinking about (re)designing a dashboard, it helps to look at examples. And The Dashboard Spy is one interesting site that lets you do just that. The anonymous Spy collects dashboard screenshots and posts them to the site.”
“Loving the Dashboard Spy. I’m probably very late to this party, but I just discovered Dashboard Spy. Given the amount of “data porn” that folks in webops look at on a daily basis, this sort of stuff is pretty damn interesting. I’m especially loving the current trend of developing ‘business’ dashboards, since it can fit in quite nicely with infrastructure statistics.”