Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

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SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Hello Everyone,
In the interest of conserving time, I wanted to host an online meeting to show you the Conditional Highlighting/Range creation dialog prototype. I'd like to get some feedback from you all as to what direction you want me to take for the v5.1 release. The prototype is rough because I didn't want to waste time filling in all the little details until I knew this was what you all wanted going forward.

In the v5.1 release of the builder, we must be able to support the highlighting of graphs, tables and now ranges. Even though the creation of ranges in StM and BID was not 'necessarily' the same function as conditional highlighting, from a user perspective, I thought they might be similar enough to include in the same dialog going forward. Ranges are nothing more than the highlighting of user-declared ranges for a single measure whereas conditional highlighting involves the highlighting of graphs and tables using one or more measures or categories.

Please review the video demo first and then answer the questions at the bottom of this post.

Here is the link to the video demo of the prototype:
https://sasmeetings.webex.com/sasmeetings/lsr.php?AT=pb&SP=MC&rID=47783527&rKey=c8d570b63e236ac3


Please answer the following questions:
1. Originally, CDD wanted me to create a dialog for creating ranges but I also included the highlighting of tables and graphs because the builder will support all three of these (I think) in the v5.1 release. Does this make sense? Or should I separate the functionality so I have a dialog for the creation of ranges and a different dialog for conditional highlighting?
2. The creation and highlighting of ranges in StM were traditionally created in the absence of a scorecard and re-usable across scorecards. Will this still be supported going forward?
3. If we allow the creation of a range to be independent of a data source (e.g., a scorecard), should we also eventually allow highlighting rules to be created independent of the data source and re-usable within and across reports? My current designs allows this to occur but I don't know if this is the vision of v5.1.
4. Should we allow users to re-use a range on a table or graph? StM was interested in this. Should we allow conditional highlighting rules to be re-used on a scorecard?

Please bring up any problems and discuss/decide what functionality should be implemented in the CDD conditional highlighting dialog for the v5.1 release and what should not be implemented.
SAS Employee
Posts: 30

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

1. I believe there should be a single dialog for both conditional highlighting and ranges. It would be very confusing to have try to explain why we have two different dialogs or menu options to the customer and which one to use when.
What I don't understand in your design is why there is a difference with a graph and an indiciator?
In all three you first have to setup a threshold and then the user can decide what they want to do when the threshold boundary is crossed. This is where things differ for tables and graphs/indicators.
2. Yes, the same now applies to 5.1 create once and reuse where possible.
3. See above
4. Yes.

We need to make this simple and straight forward. The main issue I see is that users will be confused what a range is compared to conditional highlighting and vice versa.

It would be cool if the user is on a graph/indiciator and the dialog knows how many thresholds are required.

Also you need to think about auto range creation for indicators, if you know the min and max values and given the graph/indicator we should be able to make 3 equal segments or let the user select the number of segments and do it that way.

And data driven ones too Smiley Happy

Don't forgot copy and delete.
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Posted in reply to justin_sas
Hello,
Justin asked me to provide screen shots of what conditional highlighting looks like in charts and tables. I've attached screen shots of what I had in mind but these are up for debate. Riley Benson has the most current visuals for conditional highlighting (with decals) in graphs.
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

I also wanted to share some information (an email thread) I got from Sherry Patillo on Thursday. This is a new way to think of conditional highlighting that the builder may need to consider in future releases:


From: Jason Zhou
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2011 11:16 AM
To: Sherry Patillo
Subject: FW: conditional highlighting to graphs

“Graph could conditionally be embedded within a table cell, in addition to Text and Images”? Just let you know this could be coming.

From: Kim Botha
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2011 11:04 AM
To: James Tetterton; Jason Zhou
Cc: Will Ballard; Donald Herkimer; Tom Tolman; David Bailey; Christie Corcoran
Subject: RE: conditional highlighting to graphs

Dashboard doesn’t currently support conditional highlighting on Graphs, except through Range Coloring or a Data Brush Interaction, which are both handled differently, so I believe WRS requirements would drive any potential changes in this area.

From a Dashboard perspective, the new feature that I think we might need is the ability to have a Condition reference a Graph definition (rather than vice-versa) – so that a Graph could conditionally be embedded within a table cell, in addition to Text and Images. I don’t know if this is currently supported or not? I haven’t seen it documented, but it may just be that there weren’t any examples. The use case for this would be the scenario where we have Dynamic KPIs embedded in a Table – and potentially SparkLines.

Thanks, Kim


From: James Tetterton
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2011 10:06 AM
To: Jason Zhou
Cc: Will Ballard; Kim Botha; Donald Herkimer; Tom Tolman; David Bailey; Christie Corcoran
Subject: RE: conditional highlighting to graphs

I heard that graph does support conditional highlighting on graphs, and it was supported with a shaded slashed overlay. When I talked to Don and Kim, we believed we needed to provide a way to more customize this appearance.

Can you supply an example how you do this today with ROM1.3?

From: Jason Zhou
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2011 9:23 AM
To: James Tetterton
Cc: Will Ballard
Subject: conditional highlighting to graphs

“From talks with Don and Kim, there seems to be a common request of applying conditional highlighting to graphs. Currently conditions only support images or text to be part of a cell within a table. We may need a 3rd element to support the conditional overlay for graphs.

James”


That is not true. CH is supported on graph today with shaded overlays. Unless it is taken away that is highly unlikely.

Best Regards,

J. Jason Zhou, Ph.D.
SAS Institute, 500 SAS Campus Dr.
Cary, NC 27513-8617
Voice: 919-531-0568(O)
SAS Employee
Posts: 3

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Posted in reply to justin_sas
I do not disagree, but this goal conflicts with (or poses a significant usability challenge) to the current requirement provided to CDD. The requirement is to create a component which supports the building/editing of ranges (we have a common mid-tier range service that defines these ranges). Those ranges stand on their own in some contexts, but of course they may also make up a portion of a larger conditional highlighting rule in other contexts.

Details in: http://sww.sas.com/defects/java/iDefects/WebClient.html?filename=defdatas_defects_report_full&filety... and http://sww.sas.com/defects/java/iDefects/WebClient.html?defectid=S0596485

A technical question I have for the development folks in the group is whether the BI team(s) still feel this commons requirement is appropriate. The plan is to use the Range Service, which was vetted recently, but with the new emphasis on a BIRD without black boxes is this still desirable or will the architecture drive Range definitions and persistence to become "part of" BIRD instead of "used by" BIRD?
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Hello Jeff,
Thank you for bringing up this point. I am hoping that this point will be debated herein. It seems awkward to have the range component live independent of other types of highlighting that the builder will consume.
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

One last question to the group: If we integrate the highlighting of ranges with the highlighting of tables and graphs, how do we fit in the highlighting of strategy maps (e.g., network diagrams)? A network diagram is not a table, graph, or indicator. Each box/node can be color coded and/or highlighted with an icon.
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Posted in reply to justin_sas
Hello Justin,
To address this question:
What I don't understand in your design is why there is a difference with a graph and an indiciator?

This has two different answers:
1. The visual appeal of graphs, indicators and tables are all different. The highlighting scheme of an indicator involves coloring of key portions of hte indicator; graphs currently can only use decals. That is why the component is broken into three parts; graphs, indicators and tables.

There has been a long standing discussion/debate about the use of color as a highlighting scheme in graphs because it can conflict with theme colors. Logically, I think users should be able to use color but I've had to work within the context of constraints. Also, there is debate about whether we should put the highlgihting color in the legend or not. We've (graphs, Riley Benson and WRS) discussed several ways to overcome this but nothing has been firmly decided.

We have two possible ways to apply color to graphs; 1. colring based on rules involving categories (e.g., if vendor = Lowes, color data item with Lowe's brand Blue) and 2. based on measures (e.g., creating ranges). WRS has traditionally been concerned with the application of color to graph elements based on categories and in the past Julie liked the idea of having this functionality be a data item property rather than part of conditional highlighting. When a particular data item was present in a graph (e.g., a bar in a bar chart), it would be colored according to the color chosen by the user. We never explored using color to highlight graphs based on ranges.

2. A second reason why there is a difference between graphs and indicators is because indicators use a range and graphs do not always use a range. A range involves the application of a highlighting scheme to one measure while conditional highlighting can involve more than one variable. For example, the user may want to highlight with a red flag decal when cost exceeds profits in the southeast region. Thus, both measures (cost and profit) and categories (regions) are part of a single rule. I'm not saying that we cannot apply a range to a graph or chart because Bharat (from StM) mentioned this but WRS just never had the time to explore it.

I'm not married to any ideas; I'm just here to explain the complexities and limitations to this design work.

Copy and delete are interesting concepts that WRS has struggled with in the past because that would imply that highlighting rules could live independent of reports and/or report objects (this is not the case in v4.2). There is a new impetus for that since ranges allow for copy/delete so I'm waiting to hear from the group about whether that functionality will extend beyond ranges to highlighting of charts and tables or not.

P.S. Thank you for the comment about "auto ranges." I've never heard of that and I'd be happy to include that in my work.
SAS Employee
Posts: 110

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

Riley's work on conditional highlighting with decals in graphs:

All of the mockups are here:
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/

Implementation went ahead with simple tagging for anything that worked and 3D style callout for plots with higher density (scatter and bubble). Using selection hatching as an addition cue wasn’t used due to concerns over confusing the use of hatching in the interactive versions. Also, it is unlikely that the newer, better looking hatch would have been implemented in time. The final cause for dropping it is that it would have interfered with the labels printed on graphs such as pie charts in some situations, which is much worse in the printed case than the interactive.


So, these images are fairly close to what is currently planned for printing. The interactive version may be able to be improved.

Scatter
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FTwC-Scatter03.png

Bubble
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FTwC-Bubble04.png

Bar
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FT-Bar01.png

Line
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FT-Line02.png

Pie
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FT-Pie01.png

Treemap
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/FT-Treemap02.png


-Riley
SAS Employee
Posts: 2

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

In answer to your questions:


1. Originally, CDD wanted me to create a dialog for creating ranges but I also included the highlighting of tables and graphs because the builder will support all three of these (I think) in the v5.1 release. Does this make sense? Or should I separate the functionality so I have a dialog for the creation of ranges and a different dialog for conditional highlighting?

> I think a combined dialog is fine. Would the certain tabs be disabled if, for example, there are no indicators in the report?


2. The creation and highlighting of ranges in StM were traditionally created in the absence of a scorecard and re-usable across scorecards. Will this still be supported going forward?

> I don't know.

3. If we allow the creation of a range to be independent of a data source (e.g., a scorecard), should we also eventually allow highlighting rules to be created independent of the data source and re-usable within and across reports? My current designs allows this to occur but I don't know if this is the vision of v5.1.

> I'm not sure how one could do this without knowing which measures were available from *some* data source.

> The re-use functionality could be supported, but again, it may only make sense if some data source context is supplied for the rule.


4. Should we allow users to re-use a range on a table or graph? StM was interested in this. Should we allow conditional highlighting rules to be re-used on a scorecard?

> Yes for part 1 of the question. I can't comment on part 2.


One last question to the group: If we integrate the highlighting of ranges with the highlighting of tables and graphs, how do we fit in the highlighting of strategy maps (e.g., network diagrams)? A network diagram is not a table, graph, or indicator. Each box/node can be color coded and/or highlighted with an icon.

> Might that be solution-specific? Not all products/solutions would make use of maps...


--------------------------------
Some general questions/comments:

On charts and tables tab: What's a "singleton"? "Rank"?


Scope - Should this be disabled if the data source is not not an OLAP cube?

What does the + sign mean? An implicit "and"? An implicit "or"?


You mentioned that one can elect to apply a conditional highlight to a row, column, cell, or another variable. What might applying a CH to a column denote to consumers of the report?

What text is intended to display on, for exmaple, a chart's legend when CH is applied? Your graph.bmp image shows the rule's condition (BTW, it shows the rule applying to more than one measure, implying that the + sign is an implicit "and" per my question above). Would the rule name be displayed too? Would its description be displayed if it was available? Message was edited by: DonH
SAS Employee
Posts: 3

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

My biggest concern to #1 is the impact this might have on the current requirement to build/edit ranges that are independent of the larger CHL.
SAS Employee
Posts: 2

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

"...the larger CHL"

By that did you mean an ability to represent conditions that go beyond simple ranges?

As you're aware, we have a rules processing facility (RPF) in both Java and ActionScript that can represent CH criteria that go beyond ranges. Some WRS customers have been asking for more powerful conditions for some time. This inherent power hasn't been surfaced through a UI though.
SAS Employee
Posts: 3

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

No, I am not referring to conditions that are any more powerful than those surfaced in WRS 4.3. The WIP Range service defines operator (eg. less than); value (eg 5); style (eg Green text, Thumbs up image).

The WRS CHL adds to this a left-side operand (eg DataItem) and a context where the style of a true condition should be applied (eg Level or Column).

So, when I refer to "larger CHL" I mean the use entire defintion.

If FOO is less than 5 then apply green text to BAR. The underlined portion is the WIP Range definition and the full sentence is the larger CHL.
SAS Employee
Posts: 2

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

If consideration is going toward creating a combined range/highlighting UI then I would assume that the intention is to present them in a similar fashion in the graphs.

Many graphs can utilize both, and under the current design direction, a scatter with both would look something like this:
http://d71624.na.sas.com/Graph/FixedTagging/TaggingAndRanges.png

I guess the question is if a user saw both of these features on a graph, would they assume them to be highly related or different enough to warrant separate UIs. A lot of people probably understand how they are logically very similar, but am not as sure that a novice user would lump them together because they are presented differently.

I have no experience with typical report building users, so my input is just speculation, but unless ranges/highlighting can use tagging/coloring interchangeably, integrating them seamlessly is going to be problematic without complicating the process.
SAS Employee
Posts: 11

Re: Conditional Highlighting Dialog- A CDD component

1) Conceptually I very much like the idea of combining the creation of conditional highlighting rules as well as ranges.
-- To Jeff's point, I have no idea if it makes sense technically or in light of prior requirements.
--To Riley's point about whether or not users would know or understand that both of these sub-functions are available for graphs: I think this functionality can be designed such that it just makes sense. (Famous last words.) I think what would really help -- and might be a good next step - is to put together the logical use-cases (e.g., create a rule/range in context of an object, create rule/range separate from an object, apply a rule to one object, apply a rule to multiple objects, delete a rule, apply both a rule and a range to the same object,etc...).

Further, the distinction between tables, graphs and indicators makes sense to me, though I'm not sure if this design supports creation of both a range and a rule on a graph? I have some more specific ideas about the design, but I know that is not your focus here -- we can continue brainstorming on the design once you get more clarification on the needs. .

2) I don't understand the question...

3) Like Don, I'm not sure what it would mean to create a CH rule that existed outside of a specified data source. Maybe it means that you're only saving the default visual for a rule or the ranges (which could be numerous, although it usually isn't) for a range???

4) The alternative to sharing the ranges across objects is that the user has to recreate the range for each graph and/or indicator. Why would we want to do that? It seems inherently preferable to allow rules and ranges to be reused across objects that utilize the same data source within the report.

5) Can strategy maps be integrated as a separate 'tab' (or whatever ui widget is used to represent the object concept) that can be turned on behind the scenes for customers who utilize them?

(BTW: I noticed toward the end of the video that the label of the first tab in your prototype changed from 'Tables' to 'Charts and Tables'. Is that relevant to the discussion here or is that a fluke?) Message was edited by: julierd
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