Monday, February 25, 2013

NextReports: Indicators

NextReports 6.0 will introduce a new type of report called Indicator.  An indicator can be used if you want to follow a single value inside a predefined [min, max] interval. It has a title, a small optional description, an optional measure unit and a specific color.

As table and alarm, indicator will have a report layout defined by convention. To create such report you will have to complete two header rows and one detail row:
  • first header row has three cells : title, description and unit, last two being optional
  • second header row also has three cells: min value, max value and a boolean used to show or not to show these values
  • detail row has only one cell, a column or an expression, which will offer the needed value. This cell's foreground color will be used as indicator's color

You have to select indicator type for this report, so when you publish it to server it will be available for usage inside a dashboard.

Graphical representation inside server will look like the following:

In this image we can notice:

Title : Balance
Description : monthly
Measure unit : £
Min value : -1000
Max value : 1000
Actual value : -184 

Min, max and actual values are all followed by measure unit.

To easily create an indicator, you can use the Wizard tool. First you must tell wizard that you want to create an indicator:



After some steps like data source selection and query / columns selection, you will be asked to select just one column to be used by indicator:



Last step is used to set all indicator properties:



NextReports Server will allow to add indicator as a new type of widget to be seen inside dashboards:



Indicator was implemented as a HTML5 component with a color filling animation. In case your browser is old and cannot understand HTML5, indicator representation will fallback to a simple image drawn with Java2D.

Friday, February 22, 2013

NextReports: Internationalization made by user

With version 6.0 that also brings internationalization to NextReports Server, users can add other internationalization files to automatically have the possibility of changing to their needed language.

 You need to know language and country codes. The list for all locale codes can be found here. For example lets say you want to add Spanish  internationalization.

1) For NextReports Server, you can find i18n files in installation folder:
<install_directory>\webapps\nextserver\WEB-INF\classes\com\asf\nextserver\web

You should add here your i18n file. For Spanish you should create

NextServerApplication_es_ES.properties

All i18n files must contain a new property:  

Settings.personalize.language.es_ES= <language_name>

2) For NextReports Designer, the files can be found inside a jar file. In <install_directory> /lib inside nextreports-designer-6.0.jar there is a i18n folder. Using a zip utility like 7Zip you can add your new file here.

For Spanish you should create

next-ui_es_ES.properties

All i18n files must contain a new property: 


language.es_ES= <language_name>

Although, if you want to see your national flag in Language menu bar, you should have a 16x16 pixels image which you will put in the same jar in images folder. You should edit images.properties file from jar and add a new entry:

flag-es_ES=<image_name>.png

If you create such i18n file and want to share, please send it to us at next_support@asf.ro and we will add it to main distribution to be used by other users.

Monday, February 18, 2013

NextReports Server: Forgot Password

NextReports Server 6.0 login will bring a new feature to offer assistance to users who forgot their passwords. Inside login page a "Forgot Password" link can be seen.

When user clicks this link, he will be redirected to a new page to fill user name:

After user enters his name and clicks send, NextReports Server will send an email to that user with a reset password link. To make this possible,  NextReports Server must have all necessary email settings and the user must have associated a correct email address.

By clicking the link received by email, user will be redirected to a change password page:

This link will be active only for 4 hours. After the time elapsed, user won't be able to change his password.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

NextReports Server Internationalization

NextReports Server 6.0 will allow to change your language between English, French and Romanian. This is done through settings panel:


Now, when you change your logo, theme and language, the refresh is automatically done.

Technically, in Wicket 1.5, this is done  using RenderPageRequestHandler:

getRequestCycle().scheduleRequestHandlerAfterCurrent(
             new RenderPageRequestHandler(new PageProvider(getPage()))
);

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

NextReports : Create tables & alarms through wizard

NextReports has a Wizard tool to be used for creating reports and charts in a simple and rapid way. Starting with upcoming 6.0 version, users will be also able to select report type.

For table there is no big difference than a default report. You select your columns and a template and the layout is almost identical with that of a new standard report. There is no header row with a title and no footer row.

For alarm, wizard is very useful because it will automatically create the needed layout (two cells, first with formatting conditions for color, second with an expression to show a custom message). This layout was explained in an earlier post.

Behind an alarm is a query that returns a single value for a selected database column. Wizard will follow the same first steps like: data source selection, query & column selection. After that, a special step will allow users to define the alarm:



Alarm conditions (formatting condition) are used to set the background color of alarm. These conditions must have disjunctive intervals (a value must be contained in just one interval).

For every created interval inside alarm conditions, user has to create a message. The alarm's actual value  can be used inside the message through a tag like $C_<column_name> .

There are two big advantages to use the wizard instead of creating an alarm by hand:
  • you do not have to know the convention how the alarm's layout must look
  • you do not have to know how to write the expression for alarm's messages