This blog post from the American Evaluation Association provides an overview of Google Refine, a desktop application (downloadable) that can be used to calculate frequencies and multi-tabulate data from large datasets and clean up your data.
"The following are a few examples of how I have used Google Refine: 1) Getting demographic frequencies (i.e., gender, age) and cross tabulating it with economic variables (i.e., income) and location (i.e., county). 2) Cleaning up data that it is inconsistent, since people have sometimes answered questions without any written restrictions (i.e., lengthy responses, spelling error, blank spaces). 3) When you select a date variable, Google Refine creates a bar chart with two ends that you can adjust, dragging them with your mouse to define specific time periods. 4) If you make a mistake, Google Refine allows you to undo everything you have done!" (Ramírez, 2012)
The blog includes links to three videos that demonstrate some of the potential applications Google Refine can be used for.
Ramírez, J. P. (2012, January 1). Google Refine – The tool of the year for evaluators! [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://aea365.org/blog/?p=5372
'Open refine (formerly google refine) – The tool of the year for evaluators!' is referenced in: