Lazy Programmer's Data Exploration

I am developing a new policy: Excel first (actually, second) data exploration. This morning I had a small data set and was itching to summarize it with a Jupyter notebook, maybe try some Python visualization library…

Then I thought that it takes me 15 minutes to summarize this with a Pivot table (including the learning to do some extra bits) and that is faster than even getting the Python environment set up.

The order of things to try:

  1. command line tools (sometimes the good old wc goes a long way, not to mention some newer tools like jq)

  2. Excel (mind the autoformatting though)

  3. Fancier Excel like tools

  4. Python/R/what ever