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What is SandDance in Azure Data Studio?

Fareeha Idrees

Grokking Modern System Design Interview for Engineers & Managers

Ace your System Design Interview and take your career to the next level. Learn to handle the design of applications like Netflix, Quora, Facebook, Uber, and many more in a 45-min interview. Learn the RESHADED framework for architecting web-scale applications by determining requirements, constraints, and assumptions before diving into a step-by-step design process.

What is SandDance?

SandDance is an open-source web-based application by Microsoft Research that helps to provide better insights into our data, observe data trends, and identify patterns. SandDance provides various data visualization options, plotting every data instance on the screen, and making data exploration more convenient.

This data visualization tool’s functionality is available in Visual Studio Code, Azure Data Studio, and Power BI in the form of an extension. We can choose either platform to use this tool.


Installing SandDance in Azure Data Studio

Azure Data Studio provides free extensions that can be installed to extend its features. To install Azure Data Studio, click here.

To install the SandDance extension in the Azure Data Studio, click the “Extensions” icon on the Activity Bar.

Type in “SandDance” in the Search box. Click on the SandDance extension and click “Install,” and you are done.


SandDance features at a glance

Different chart types

SandDance provides several chart types to help with data visualization.

Interestingly, SandDance has a recommender chart type as well, which auto figures the best chart type for the data being visualized.

Column chart type recommended on Heart Disease data

History stack

There is a History icon on the sidebar that can be used to switch to any point in the history list.

History Stack

Displays all instances

Every instance/row is displayed in the charts, and hovering the cursor over each instance displays its information. These unit visualizations help develop context, build hypotheses, and identify outliers.

Hovering over the data instance displays that element's information

3D graph plots

We can view all the chart types in 3D. We can rotate the graphs and interpret the relationship between different attributes.

3D Plotting

Snapshots

A snapshot is just what the name suggests. We can take a snapshot at any point we want, and even add a note to it.

Snapshots in the web app can also be shared as a .json file, or converted to a Markdown page, or HTML.

Creating a Snapshot in SandDance

We can go back to each snapshot that we take and use it for comparing the different results. We even get the option to edit the snapshot title and associated note, or delete the created snapshots.

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data
installation
data visualization
extension

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Fareeha Idrees
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Grokking Modern System Design Interview for Engineers & Managers

Ace your System Design Interview and take your career to the next level. Learn to handle the design of applications like Netflix, Quora, Facebook, Uber, and many more in a 45-min interview. Learn the RESHADED framework for architecting web-scale applications by determining requirements, constraints, and assumptions before diving into a step-by-step design process.

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