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Automating your mekko graphics charts
 

Automating your mekko graphics charts

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Many of our customers produce the same presentations every week or month. While the data changes, the charts stay the same. The presentations could be weekly sales dashboards or monthly departmental ...

Many of our customers produce the same presentations every week or month. While the data changes, the charts stay the same. The presentations could be weekly sales dashboards or monthly departmental status reports. If the reporting data is in Microsoft Excel, you can use the Mekko Graphics “Link to Excel” feature to speed up the production of these reports.

Alternatively, you can use our Application Programming Interface (API) to move data directly from your data warehouse into a Mekko Graphics presentation. Sometimes the charts created by your reporting system or analytics tools aren't polished enough to share with senior management or key customers. Using the Mekko Graphics API, your enterprise data can flow seamlessly into a high quality and visually appealing PowerPoint presentation.

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    Automating your mekko graphics charts Automating your mekko graphics charts Presentation Transcript

    • Automating Your Mekko Graphics ChartsMarch 12, 2013
    • Link to Excel is not established (sales dashboard, slide 2)Number of Support Requests 100 89 80 60 56 40 31 25 20 0 1/5/2013 1/12/2013 1/19/2013 1/26/2013 Week Ending: Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 2
    • Link to Excel was establishedNumber of Support Requests 100 89 80 76 60 56 56 54 43 42 40 34 34 31 25 20 0 1/5/2013 1/12/2013 1/19/2013 1/26/2013 2/2/2013 2/9/2013 2/16/2013 2/23/2013 3/2/2013 3/9/2013 3/16/2013 Week Ending: Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 3
    • Link to Excel was established 500 457 400 368 371 310 315 294 300 300 277 279 270 Small Medium 213 200 Large 100 0 1/5/2013 1/12/2013 1/19/2013 1/26/2013 2/2/2013 2/9/2013 2/16/2013 2/23/2013 3/2/2013 3/9/2013Total 294 277 279 213 310 270 368 315 371 457 300 Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 4
    • Automating Your Mekko Graphics ChartsUsing the Mekko Graphics APIDarryl RobinsonAPI Solutions Manager
    • Topics• Part 1 – What the API is – How to obtain it – What its capabilities and benefits are – How the Mekko Graphics team can help you leverage the API in your organization• Part 2 – How to install it – How to plan and build an application using the API• Q&A Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 6
    • The Mekko Graphics API• A programming interface used to build applications that generate Mekko Graphics charts and PowerPoint presentations• Can be called from applications written in a variety of programming languages• Sample applications supplied in C# and Visual Basic Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 7
    • Obtaining the Mekko Graphics API• Downloaded and installed separately from Mekko Graphics• Available free of charge to our preferred customers• Contact us to find out whether your organization qualifies Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 8
    • API Capabilities and Benefits• Use the API to create interactive Mekko Graphics charts• Use the API to create charts from Excel workbooks, databases, Web services, or BI platforms• Resulting charts may be refined in PowerPoint if necessary Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 9
    • The API in Action• Desktop application that generates a Market Map of Revenue by Region and Vertical• Data sourced from a SQL Server database• API enables real-time interaction with chart: – View different years – Select different subsets of regions or verticals – Highlight underperforming regions – Save chart to PowerPoint presentation Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 10
    • Getting Started• Use internal technical resources to develop your application• Have our consultants develop your application• Have your team perform the development with advice from our consultants Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 11
    • Part 2• How to install the API• How to plan and build an application• Q&A Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 12
    • Installing the Mekko Graphics API• Double-clicking the installation file launches a standard setup program that installs the API• Installation directory includes: – Libraries (DLLs) to be referenced by your projects – Sample applications with source code – Help files, which are also available online• Sample applications, help, and source code are available from your Start menu Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 13
    • Planning Your Application• Select the chart(s) to automate• Use our Chart Decomposition Checklist to describe the chart(s) in detail• Identify the data source(s) for the chart(s) and determine whether transformation is required• Describe any additional functionality Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 14
    • Planning: Chart Selection• Use the API to automate charts based on: – Programmatically available data (e.g. a database or Web service) – Data with rule-based, repeatable transformation logic Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 15
    • Planning: Chart Selection• A good automation candidate: 2012 Revenue by Region and Vertical $706M $616M $480M $237M Total = $2,039M 100% Other 19% Other 19% Other 24% Other 33% 80 Services 16% Services 13% Services 7% Retail 15% Services 8% Retail 60 Retail 14% 18% Retail 15% Communications 10% Communications 12% 40 Communications 19% 20 Financial Services 44% Financial Services 40% Financial Financial Services Services 25% 25% 0 USA & Canada Europe Asia Pacific Rest of World – Based on transactional data that is probably already summarized for management reporting – Transforming the raw data is straight forward Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 16
    • Planning: Chart Decomposition• Use our chart decomposition checklist to describe each selected chart:• Use the checklist to capture the rule, not the exceptions Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 17
    • Planning: Data Decomposition• Use the Data Editor to determine the structure of your chart’s data Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 18
    • Planning: Data Decomposition• First column stores series names• Subsequent columns store chart data• Derive subsequent column names from bar labels Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 19
    • Planning: Data Decomposition• Identify the source of the data Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 20
    • Planning: Data Decomposition• Determine how to massage the source data Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 21
    • Planning: Additional Functionality• Should your application allow ad-hoc analysis, and, if so, along what dimension(s)?• Should your application allow chart customization (e.g. changing series colors)? Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 22
    • Building Your Application• API application design pattern – Retrieve and massage data – Link massaged data to the chart – Format chart using properties from your Chart Decomposition Checklists – Add the chart to a PowerPoint presentation – Implement additional interactivity (e.g. ability to change years, industries, or regions) Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 23
    • Application Walkthrough• The user interface Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 24
    • Application Walkthrough• The source code Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 25
    • Application Walkthrough• BindChartData method – Retrieves raw data – Displays raw data in a read-only grid – Creates a DataTable to store massaged data – Massages raw data and adds it to the DataTable and a read-only grid – Links the massaged data to the chart by setting _oChart.DataSource Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 26
    • Application Walkthrough• FormatChart method controls the chart’s appearance – Sets chart-wide properties (e.g. whether legend is displayed, or unplaced labels are “smart placed”) – Formats bar totals and grand total – Formats axes, including labels and titles – Formats segment values and series labels – Formats series colors and positioning – Adjusts margins and “smart places” labels Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 27
    • Application Walkthrough• CreateDeck method adds chart to PowerPoint presentation – Creates a new presentation, or opens an existing presentation – Adds slide containing current chart to the presentation – Saves presentation – Quits PowerPoint Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 28
    • Q&A / Resources• Contact Darryl Robinson at 781-250-2007 or drobinson@mekkographics.com if you’re interested in obtaining the API or learning more.• More information about the API can be found at http://www.mekkographics.com/product/mekko-graphics-api/• This presentation will be available via slideshare at http://www.slideshare.net• Webinar audio/video available on the Mekko Graphics YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/MekkoGraphics. Copyright 2013 © Mekko Graphics. All rights reserved. 29