Getting Started

There's much more to come, but this is a quick overview of working with Chartnado.

When you first install Chartnado, you won't have any dashboards yet so the Welcome screen is shown:

Welcome Screen

To create a new dashboard select either the 'Create A New Dashboard' button or use the '+' icon in the toolbar in the upper-right corner on the toolbar.

When you create a new dashboard you are presented with the Dashboard Builder. This is where you lay out all the components that will be part of this dashboard:

The Dashboard Builder

For this walk through, we'll create the simplest possible dashboard, one that has a single crosst able on it. We'll talk more about crosstable(s) in a future document, for now think of them as a pivot table where every cell can contain a complete visual.

Chartnado is a completely drag and drop based tool, so to start, drag a cross table from the toolbox onto the area marked 'drop' on the canvas:

Drag a Cross Table to the canvas

Once you have dragged a cross table on to the canvas you can edit it's properties with the Edit navigation item in the properties pane. If you do not see the properties pane shown in the screen shot make sure that the cross table is selected (the properties pane changes based on what's currently selected).

This will take you to the CrossTable Builder. The first thing we have to do is choose a data source for this cross table so let's do that by selecting the 'Table' button:

Start by choosing a data source

Now, Chartnado can hook up to many data sources. To keep things simple and to encourage people to try out the software we have provided some demo data. To set the demo data as the source for this cross table, filter the blocks using the Search box at the top of the toolbox:

Select the demo data as our source

Once you have selected the demo data as the source for this cross table you can preview the first 50 rows of the data with the inspector. We'll talk more about the inspector as we go along but for now you can think of it as a runtime debug system that helps you visualize each step of the process:

Preview the demo data

Once you have added the demo data source to the canvas, head back to the Cross Table builder using the button in the upper-left on the toolbar.

Now we have a list of columns that we can use to drag to the various portions of the cross table. There are four possible places to drag a column:

  1. Rows

  2. Columns

  3. Arguments

  4. Values

This interface is very similar to that of a pivot table. That's on purpose, since a cross table is the pivot table concept taken several steps forward. We'll discuss the cross table in great detail in a bit, for now let's concentrate on creating a simple chart using our demo data.

In this example what we are trying to do is create a chart that groups sales by 'Sales Region'. The default visual for a cross table is a chart so we don't have to change anything there. All we really have to do is:

  • drag 'Sales Territory' to 'Arguments' since we want to have one bar for each Sales Territory

  • drag 'Line Total' to 'Values' since we want to sum the values of Line Total for each Sales Territory

So, drag 'Sales Territory' to 'Arguments' and 'Line Total' to 'Values':

A basic cross table

Now, there's much more that can be done with a cross table but for now we'll keep things simple. Head back to the dashboard builder using the 'Dashboard Builder' button in the upper-left corner on the toolbar.

Once back on the dashboard builder page it hasn't changed much since this the layout of the dashboard. In order to actually see the dashboard we have to head back to the dashboard view, so go back one more using the 'Dashboard' button in the upper-left corner on the toolbar.

Back on the dashboard page you can do several things, the two most important being:

  • list the dashboards you have in your workspace

  • create a new dashboard

  • edit a given dashboard

To list the dashboards you have, choose the 'Folder' button in the upper-left corner on the toolbar:

Open the dashboards list

This opens the workspace dashboards list where you can select a dashboard:

The dashboards list

To edit a dashboard, select it from the list and select the 'Edit' button in the upper-right on the toolbar:

Edit a dashboard

You can also create a new dashboard using the '+' button on the toolbar.

That's it. You have now created a simple dashboard. There is much, much more to Chartnado so have a look around, experiment and see what you can create. If you ever have any questions drop us a line at [email protected] and we'd be happy to help!

Have fun