Contents | Chapter-Section: 5-8 |

Graphs

The "Graph Editor" is used to design and print a wide variety of standard business graphs. Using the Graph Editor, data can be plotted without having to Export the data to a graphing software.

Graphs can be printed or copied to the Clipboard and pasted into another application.

Keywords

Graph | Report | Printing | Column graph | Proportional column graph | Stacked column graph | Line graph | Area graph | Scatter graph | Pie chart |

Example: Performance, graphing summary data

Play Movie: s7_Perfo.MOV

Graph Editor Produces:

Column graphs which represent values as columns.

Proportional column graphs which represent values as columns, and stacks the columns to represent percentages of a total.

Stacked column graphs which represent values as stacked columns.

Line graphs which represent values as points and connects the points with a line.

Area graphs which shade the area below a line.

Scatter graphs which display values as points on an x–y grid.

Pie charts which display data in a circular chart where each value is represented by a slice of a pie.

Picture graphs which represent each value with a picture. You can specify the picture to be used.

Graph’s scale can be modified and patterns and colors of each element of the graph can be changed.

The "Graph Editor" produces two-dimensional graphs. The horizontal axis is referred to as the x-axis and the vertical axis is referred to as the y-axis. A graph is created by assigning a Field to the x-axis and one or more Numeric Fields to the y-axis.

The field assigned to the x-axis can be alphanumeric, numeric, date or time. X-axis values are automatically grouped. For example, if the "Rep" field is assigned to the x-axis. The sum is automatically calculated for all values of each y-axis field for each "Rep". This feature is referred to as "Grouping on the x-axis" and can be disabled when necessary. When "Grouping on the x -axis" is disabled, each record is treated as a separate group. This is disabled through the scale adjustments.

Up to 100 groups can be plotted on the x-axis. There is no limit to the number of records that can be graphed.

In all graph types, the fields assigned to the y-axis must be numeric. Up to five fields can be assigned to the y-axis. For example, if "Customer" record data is being graphed, the x-axis field could be "Customer Code" and the y-axis fields could be "Sales YTD"," SalesLastYear" and so forth.

Data for a graph can be directed from a QuickReport. When this option is used, the "QuickReport Editor" is used to do preliminary data processing prior to graphing data. If a QuickReport is directed to the "Graph Editor", the columns in the QuickReport are treated as fields in the "Graph Editor". For more information on designing a QuickReport for the "Graph Editor", see "QuickReports"

Creating a Graph

The "Graph Editor" graphs the records in the current selection. Before graphing data, select the records to graph. Methods of selecting records are discussed in the section titled "Search".

To create a graph, follow these steps:

1. Review menu > Graphs...

If this step is taken from the Splash screen the "File Selection" dialog box opens. If this step is taken from an Output screen the "Graph Editor" opens, bypassing the "File Selection" dialog box.

The "File Selection" dialog box contains the:

File area, where the desired file is chosen by highlighting it.

All button, to select all records in the chosen file.

Change Selection button, which opens the "Search Editor".

Sort Current Selection button, which opens the "Sort Editor".

Status Fields which displays the number of total records in the highlighted file as well as the number of records in the current selection.

2. Choose the file desired by highlighting it in the "File" area.

3. The status of that file is displayed in the "Status" Fields. In "File at Startup" is the total number of records in that file when the program was opened. The "Current Selection" is the number of records in the current selection. The current selection is used for the graph.

If the current selection needs to be changed, click the "Change Selection" button. The "Search Editor" opens.

4. When the current selection and file are the ones desired click the "OK" button.

CommerceExpert/WebClerk displays the "Graph Editor".

5. Select a graph type from the eight templates.

6. Assign a field to the x-axis by clicking on a field in the Field list. For pie charts, the x-axis field is used to label slices of the pie.

If the graph is to display values from low to high (or high to low) on the x-axis, sort the current selection by the x-axis field before displaying the Graph Editor, or use the proportional x-axis option.

When a field is assigned to the x-axis, the non-numeric fields become dimmed.

7. Assign one or more numeric fields to the y-axis by clicking on a field or fields.

CommerceExpert/WebClerk displays the field names in the y-axis listing. For all graph types except pie charts, five numeric fields can be assigned to the y-axis.

Viewing the Graph

After fields have been assigned to the x-axis and y-axis and a graph type selected, the graph can be viewed. When a graph is displayed, graph types can be changed, colors or patterns can be assigned to elements of the graph, pictures can be added and scaling options chosen.

Displaying the Graph

To display the graph click the "Graph" button. CommerceExpert/WebClerk displays the graph.

When a graph is displayed, the current menu bar is replaced with the Graph Editor menus, Pictures, Graph Type, and Options. Use these menus to change pictures in a Picture graph, change the graph type, or scale the graph.

To change graph types, choose another graph type from the Graph Type menu.

The graph is drawn in the new format.

If a pie chart is chosen from a type of graph that displayed more than one y-axis field, only the first field is graphed assigning it to the y-axis.

Changing the Color or Pattern of an Element

Each element in a graph that is represented in the legend can be assigned a pattern and color. The color option is available only on monitors that support gray scale or color. All options are available for column, proportional column, stacked column, area and pie graphs. The Line graph and Scatterplots use foreground color only.

To change the color or pattern of an element in the graph, follow these steps:

1. Click on the square in the graph legend that corresponds to the element to be assigned a pattern or color.

2. Select a pattern from the scrollable list of patterns.

If a color or gray-scale monitor is being used, selecting foreground and background colors or gray scales is possible.

Colors and patterns set for one graph type affect all graph types. These specifications are saved with the database.

Note: In multi-user mode, these specifications cannot be changed.

Changing the Picture in a Picture Graph

If Pictures is chosen as a graph type, a custom picture that is placed on the Clipboard can be substituted .

To include a custom picture, follow these steps:

1. With a Picture graph displayed, copy the custom picture to the Clipboard.

2. Choose the y-axis field from the Pictures menu that you want to represent with the picture on the Clipboard.

CommerceExpert/WebClerk re-draws the graph, substituting a proportionally-scaled picture for each x-axis value in the graph. The same picture is used for all values of the x-axis field. The height of the picture, not the area, represents the value of the y-axis field.

Changing the Scaling of a Graph

To specify scaling, follow these steps:

1. Options menu > Scale.

The "Graph Options" dialog box opens.

2. Click:

Group on x-axis to request that records with the same value on the x-axis field be grouped together to form one category. If "Group on x-axis" is not used, records with the same value on the x-axis will be treated as separate categories in the graph.

Proportional x-axis to draw the x-axis in proportion to the values of the field assigned to the x-axis. This option is available only when the field assigned to the x-axis is numeric, date or time and the type of graph is either scatter or line.

Automatic x-scale to turn off the automatic scaling of the x-axis, then enter the minimum and maximum values you want to use in the graph. This option is available only when "Proportional x-axis" is checked.

Automatic y-scale to turn off the automatic scaling of the y-axis, then enter the minimum and maximum values you want to use in the graph. This option is always available.

Grid on x-axis to add vertical lines to the graph. The x-axis gridlines appear only when "Proportional x-axis" is checked.

Grid on y-axis to add horizontal lines to the graph. This option is always available.

3. Click the "OK" button to apply the scaling options to the graph.

Unavailable options are disabled in the "Graph Options" dialog box.

Printing a Graph

After the graph design is satisfactory, it can be printed. The procedure for printing a graph is the same as the procedure for printing "QuickReports" or labels.

To print a graph, follow these steps:

1. While the graph is displayed, File menu > Print. The standard "Print" dialog box for the selected printer opens.

Click "Preview" on screen, if a preview is desired prior to printing.

2. Choose any desired options and click the "OK" button.

If "Preview" on screen was chosen, the report can be printed by clicking the "Print" button.

Copying a Graph

A graph can be copied to the Clipboard and pasted into another application.

To copy a graph, when the graph is displayed, Edit menu > Copy .

The graph is paced on the Clipboard.