Suppressing data when n is below a certain value

25 pts.
Tags:
data confidentiality
data suppression
excel
I am working on a dashboard in Power BI that pulls data from an Excel file. I'd like to build in the capability to suppress results on the dashboard if the number of data points behind the result is too small, in order to ensure the confidentiality of the data. Power BI doesn't have this capability, but I'm wondering if there is a formula in Excel that could stop the data from showing on the dashboard if the number of cells in Excel is small, e.g., less than 30. 
Thanks!


Software/Hardware used:
Excel, Power BI Report Server
1

Answer Wiki

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You might want to try the Excel ROWS function. It returns the number of rows in a given reference. For example, ROWS(A1:A3) returns 3, since the range A1:A3 contains 3 columns

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  • Subhendu Sen
    If understood correctly, to count the number of cells that contain values less than a particular number (as you said less than 30), you can try with COUNTIF function in Excel. However, generally a formula depends on format of data/ row / column etc.
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  • lmonner
    Thank you ToddN2000. Are you saying that maybe I could build the ROWS function into each of the dashboard visualizations? Let's say I have a column of gender data, a column of age data, and a column of ethnicity data, plus the columns of outcome data. What I want is to be able suppress a result from displaying on the dashboard if it includes too few rows of data, so that the gender, age, and ethnicity data doesn't make it possible to identify people.
    I'll try adding a clause to the formulas used so that if ROWS <30, no result is shown. 
    Thanks for the idea, and let me know if this is not what you meant.
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  • lmonner
    Subhendu Sen, thank you also.
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  • ToddN2000
    @Immoner: That's what I was thinking, if too few rows returned then do your branching logic to not display. Let us know what method you tried and what worked for you.

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