Infoactive screenshot

Unleash creativity and the world will never be the same.

Those words belong to Christian Chabot, CEO of Tableau Software — and likely played some role in Tableau's purchase today of Infoactive, a 3-year-old infographics web app startup based in Montreal.

This is the first acquisition in Tableau’s history, which says a lot. Tableau, however, isn’t talking much beyond a canned comment its press release and a general "welcome" on one of its company blogs.

Why Infoactive?

Chabot and his team have been on a simple mission for the more than a dozen years — to help people to see and understand their data.

And when Tableau says “people,” it's not talking only about Ph.D. data scientists, MBA business analysts and geeks. It literally means “everyone,” Francois Ajenstat, Vice President of Product Management at Tableau Software, assured me during a conversation at Tableau’s conference last year.

And though Tableau’s data rich visuals (aka vizzes), really are all of that — given that you can literally play with them and watch them change (or use them to make data-informed business decisions) — there are workers among us who might have trouble creating them and understanding their impact without any training or effort.

Simplify, Please

Looking at and making infographics may be easier for some.

Ditto for doing it with a web app that was built specifically for a mobile-first, cloud-first world. And being able to leverage any mobile device and its touchscreen for data exploration, shazam!

Those are some of the characteristics of Infoactive’s data visualization service, which helps ordinary people build dynamic infographics that scale to different devices.

In a blog post today, Ben Jones, director of Product Marketing,Tableau Public at Tableau Software, stated simply that Infoactive "supports our mission to help people see and understand their data."

He added that he was "thrilled" to welcome Infoactive team members Trina Chiasson, co-founder and CEO, Daniel Roberts, co-founder and CTO, and developer Dorian Scheidt to the Tableau development team.

Chisson, writing on the Infoactive website, said she and her team have "always admired Tableau’s mission to help people see and understand data; now we’re working together to pursue our vision on a larger scale."