Visual FX in QlikView (5): Merry Xmas 2014!

Christmas time is near again, so it’s time for another visual effect in QlikView: the QlikFix 2014 Christmas Card. Using the trusty animated scatter plot once more, I’ve built a little spinning Christmas tree (and, in the spirit of Christmas, added some awful music ;) ). Check the video below:

The complete QVW can be downloaded below:

Download the 2014 QlikFix Christmas Card

Wishing you all happy holidays and all the best for 2015!

More visual FX in QlikView:

 

New feature: QlikView / Qlik Sense book list

Books for QlikView and Qlik Sense developers and consultantsDifferent people have different preferences for acquiring new skills and knowledge. Some like to follow a classroom training while others prefer to start with a concrete problem, research the subject themselves and learn by doing. Some people like to read blog posts and watch videos, while others prefer to read a book. Today I have something for that last group; a reading list for QlikView and Qlik Sense professionals.

The reading list is available through this link, or via the top menu bar. It does not only contain books about QlikView or Qlik Sense, but also a range of peripheral methods, skills and technologies that I believe will make you a more well-rounded Qlik professional. I will be periodically updating this list with new and relevant books.

I hope you will enjoy this list. If there are any must-read books that you are missing, feel free to contact me through the contact form, or leave me a comment below.

Remove scrolling tabs from QlikView Chart Properties

Remove scrolling tabs from QlikView Chart Properties

A short post today, but one that will fix a very common developer annoyance in QlikView 11 and 11.2; the scroll tabs in the chart properties dialog window. When you want to change properties on tabs that are on opposing sides of the tab row (for example, Dimensions and then Layout) you first have to click the scroll arrows before you can select the tab. Extremely annoying, if you ask me.

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Introduction to alternate states

QlikView Alternate StatesA little while ago, I was asked to change an existing QlikView Application. While scanning the application, I found that it used Alternate States. I had already heard about Alternate States, and that they could store different user selections, but didn’t have any hands-on experience yet. I decided to dig a bit deeper into the subject before continuing. I wrote down what I learned in this post

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Masters Summit early-bird offer ends this week

Masters Summit for QlikView - Amsterdam

A quick heads-up for those of you who are planning to attend the upcoming Masters Summit for QlikView in Amsterdam, the early-bird offer ends this Friday, August 15th. Don’t miss out on a $300 discount!

For more information about the event, or to register, please go to the Masters Summit for QlikView website. I hope to meet many of you there!

Building a nicer (dynamic) multibox, without extensions

Building a nicer, dynamic multibox in QlikViewThe multibox is a QlikView object that I find extremely useful because it allows you to fit selection fields into a much smaller space. At the same time, I also find it extremely annoying; the gradient looks dated and if you want your field names and values to be readable you will often have to make both columns quite wide. For these reasons I tend to not use the multibox in my applications, using a conditionally hidden drop-down filter panel instead.

Recently, I was hired to perform a health check on an application. The application made extensive use of a multibox (in a very nice and flexible way, I should add). One of the challenges my client was facing was that not every field was relevant to every user. Besides a general technical review of the application, the developers wanted to know if it was possible to create a dynamic multibox. A multibox where users could select which fields they want to show.

As I started digging in to this question, I realized there’s a much nicer way to create a multibox. After experimenting with it for a bit, I actually like this solution so much that I will probably be using it in some of my future projects.

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Aliases, to indent or not?

“Code is read more often than it is written”

  – common programming adage

As someone who often has to look at/modify QlikView script written by others, I have come to appreciate the value of readable script. Rather than taking an “if it works, it works” attitude, I always try to write my script with readability and consistency in mind. Somewhere down the line someone else (or worse, you) might have to decipher what a specific script is doing in order to modify or extend it.

Today I want to ask your opinion on the readability of a specific part of the QlikView script, indentation of aliases within LOAD statements. To this end, I’ve taken a piece of script from the QlikView System Monitor and formatted the aliases in three different ways. (note: I don’t agree with the absence of white space in functions and between operators, but have left that as is)

Have a look at the three options, and then please answer the two multiple choice questions below.

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ABC: Always Be Closing

Always Be ClosingA very short tip on writing QlikView expressions that might save you a lot of headaches. In my last online training on Set Analysis (another one coming up this week) I showed a simple technique that I use when writing expressions in QlikView, especially when they contain nested functions. Based on the feedback, it seemed to resonate quite well with the attendees and not everybody was aware of this technique, so I thought I might share it with you as well.

It can simply be summarized as: Always Be Closing.

Whenever I write an expression that contains a parenthesis (or curly bracket/chevron/whatever) that also needs to be closed, I immediately close it and place the cursor one step back. Or, to show it visually (in slow mo):

This way, you’ll never need to think about how many parentheses/etc. you need to close your expression. Of course,  this technique also works for Excel, SQL or any programming language.

As a follow-on tip, whenever I have to ‘decipher’ a nested expression within QlikView, I work inside-out. Start with the inner-most function, figure out what it does and what value(s) it returns, then move on to the function that uses the output of the first function, figure out what that does, and so on.

Online training: QlikView Set Analysis

QlikView Set Analysis Training

Just a quick heads-up about a new online training that Miguel García and I are offering: Set Analysis. We delivered our first training on May 2nd and received excellent ratings and feedback. We are now scheduling new sessions, the first one being held May 23rd 2014. This is a live, instructor-led, 4 hour online training. We have multiple sessions (both in English and Spanish), so you should be able to find one that fits your time zone. More information can be found on the website, or after the break.

Register Now for the Online Set Analysis Training

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Linked bar charts

Two questions from business users that will probably sound familiar to most QlikView Developers:

“We currently use this report. Can you re-make this in QlikView?”

and

“Our graphics designer came up with this dashboard. Can you do that in QlikView?”

Quite often you’ll find the answer to be yes. Although admittedly, you often may also want to suggest another approach, especially when asked the first question.

Recently I was asked if the following chart could be built in QlikView:

Linked Bar Chart - The Challenge

As you can see, this chart compares relative-to-total amounts for two periods. There is a vague area that connects both bars and kind-of-but-not-so-much shows the change between the periods. I had to think a bit harder before responding to that question…

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