Anatomy of a Table
A table has multiple sections, each with its own properties. By default, a Table consists of three sections:
- Table Body - Grey area at the bottom of the table template. You can stretch and shrink the table boundaries to position and size a table.
- Table Rows - There are three types of table rows: Header, Details, and Summary. More information on these row types can be found on the Table Rows page.
- Text Shapes / Cells - are available only in a structured table row. In Reporting, Text Shapes are commonly referred to as cells. You can select multiple cells with alt or shift.
Text Shapes or Cells
If you're looking in the Project Browser tree, you'll notice a node called 'Text Shape.' In Reporting, the Text Shape is also called a 'cell.' For the sake of clarity, Text Shapes will be referred to as 'cells,' unless we are referring to the Text Shape component.
The following example shows the basic anatomy of a table with data populated in the Header, Details, and Summary rows. Once you're finished designing your report, go to the Preview panel and check your results. You can continue to navigate between the Design and the Preview panels making changes until you get your report just right!
Each section (i.e., Table, Rows, and Cells), when selected, has its own unique properties, along with some common basic properties that appear in the Properties tab of the Property Inspector. Refer to the Table page in the Appendix for a complete list of all Table properties.
When you first drag a table into the Design panel of your report, the Configure Table tab will appear in the Property Inspector. You will see that it has a default Data Key of "Objects", which matches the Details row in the table. The first step when configuring your table is to drag your Datasource from the Key Browser to the Data Key field in the Configure Table tab. Changing the Data Key will also change the label on the Details row making it easier to determine what you are looking at when editing multiple tables or Groupings. Depending on how you want to present your data, you may also want to add Header and Summary Rows.
The Data Key
field represents the data source that the table will pull records from. The Table can only have a single data source assigned to it. If the table needs to display values from multiple data sources, then a Nested Query
should be used to collect all the values, and then assigned to the table's Data Key setting.
Once you add a Data Key to your table, you can start designing. There are many tools built into the Table interface that you can use to help you layout and organize the data in your table. Now all you need to do is decide how you want to organize and display the data in your report.
If you have a lot of tabular data, you probably want to use a Standard row. You might start by simply dragging your Data Keys from the Key Browser to columns in your Details row. Then, you might give each Header column a label. If you have a bunch of numbers that you want to add together, find out the 'min', 'max,' you can create a Summary row, enable the Show Calculations property, and choose from the list of calculation keys. Lastly, you might want to make some cosmetic changes to the font size, font color, or changing the Header row from structured to unstructured so you can add an image, chart, text shapes, etc.