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Chapter 5: Using Worksheets

This chapter describes worksheets and how you use them to manage your work.

5.1 Introduction to the Worksheet

The worksheet lists the points of interest (POIs) in the project together with a range of information on each one. The worksheet is the central point for keeping points of interest. The worksheet keeps track of what's of interest and why.

Figure 5-1 shows an example worksheet.

Figure 5-1: Worksheet

The worksheet displays information in a number of pages, identified by the title on their tabs. Many items of information are common to all tabs: these include location of the point of interest (that is, the source file containing it), categories allocated to it, notes added to it, modification details etc.

The worksheet tabs show information on the following elements of a project:

Only the Data Items, Statements and Data Stores tabs of the worksheet are displayed all the time: the other tabs appear only when they contain points of interest.

5.2 Monitoring the Points of Interest

You use the worksheet to manage your work, which involves:

Ultimately, the worksheet contains all the points of interest, together with other relevant information in the form of categories and notes, plus an audit trail which gives a history of the analysis.

5.3 Manipulating and Navigating the Worksheet

There are a number of techniques for moving around the worksheet and for finding worksheet entries quickly and easily:

To achieve this:
Do this:
Sort the entries in order Click a column heading to sort the entries according to the data in the column
Widen a column Drag the divider between one column heading and the next.
Change the order of columns Drag columns to the position you want them to change their order
Hiding a column Right click on a column heading and select Customize Columns
Filter the worksheet, to show only the required entries Right-click on the column you want to filter, select filterDefine filter and specify the entries you want, using wildcards as necessary. Alternatively, you can apply a named filter that you have saved earlier.
Display the source code Select a data item or statement and click View source View Source Code. You can also press F9 to show the source view in a separate window.
Show statements for the selected data items (multiple entries are allowed) Select the data items and press F3. The results appear on a Results tab.
Show data items for the selected statements (multiple entries are allowed) Select the statements and press F3. The results appear on a Results tab.
Select multiple entries Click one entry, hold down Shift and click another entry to select a whole range of entries.
Click one entry, hold down Ctrl and click other entries to select the individual entries.
Show all columns in full Press Ctrl + F2.

5.4 Filtering Worksheets

There are several ways of filtering a worksheet. You can:

You can incude "*" and "?" wildcards in a text pattern. The "*" wildcard represents multiple instances of any character or characters, while the "?" wildcard represents one instance of any character. For example, *-AMT includes all text patterns that end in -AMT, while FILE? includes all text patterns of exactly five characters, of which the first four are FILE.

Each column of a worksheet tab can have a number of filter criteria associated with it. A filter criterion is either a "hide all except" criterion (hide all the points of interest except those with this value or pattern) or a "hide" criterion (hide the points of interest with this value or pattern.). Where there are both types of criteria, the effect is to display those points of interest that match at least one of the hide-all-except criteria and none of the hide criteria.

For example, suppose you decide to filter by the Data item column of the Data items tab, by specifying the following patterns:

Hide-all-except criteria: *-AMT *-DUE
Hide criteria: BAL-* CHG-*

This would show all the data items whose names end in -AMT or -DUE, except for the ones with names beginning with BAL- or CHG-. Thus data items like NEW-AC-AMT and DATE-DUE would be displayed, but BAL-OVER-DUE or CHG-BILL-AMT would not.

5.5 Allocating Worksheet Categories

Processing the worksheet entails allocating a category to each entry. You can use categories to indicate, for example, whether the point of interest definitely requires investigation, why a code change is required, or perhaps the type of work required.You could use it to record the types of problem anticipated from the point of interest.

You assign categories to a point of interest in the worksheet by selecting the point of interest and clicking category. A point of interest can have multiple categories.

There is a set of default categories in the settings database file settings.mdb,. You can tailor the categories to suit your specific analysis task. See the online help topic How to assign a category to worksheet details for further details.

5.6 Multiple Worksheets

You can have more than one worksheet per project. See the online help topic To enable multiple worksheets for further details. If multiple worksheets are enabled, when you click Open Worksheet on the Enterprise menu, you get the option to create a new worksheet, as well as options to open any existing worksheets you have already created.

You may have a default worksheet, created with the name <project-name>.mdb. The default worksheet is stored in the option folder under the project folder. A default worksheet exists if either of the following apply:

You can store any additional worksheets for the same project where you like.

You should use each worksheet to represent a distinct business problem, independent of other business problems that you are investigating in other worksheets.

You can have only one worksheet open at a time. Revolve Enterprise Edition stores the last five worksheets used per option within project.

Note: When you use the worksheet channel and you have enabled multiple worksheets, the most recently used worksheet is opened. If there is no last used worksheet, the default worksheet based on the project name is opened.

5.7 Group Working

With Revolve Enterprise Edition, you can share a worksheet among a group of users, so that they can share the information they gather and their analysis.

Group working can be done in one of three ways:

Note: In the last method above, all the users must have exact copies of the project, otherwise they may have problems opening the group worksheet or submitting changes for inclusion in the group worksheet.

5.7.1 Group Worksheets

The group worksheet is a master copy of the worksheet containing all of the points of interest for the whole project. It is read-only to the group: only the administrator can update it. The use of the group worksheet involves the following procedures: Creating the Group Worksheet

You can create the group worksheet from a worksheet that is currently open. The person who creates the group worksheet notionally becomes the group worksheet administrator. Optionally at this point, you can supply a group worksheet password to prevent other group users from changing the group worksheet's contents.

When you promote the local worksheet to a group worksheet, you should use a UNC address, for example, \\machine\share-name\dir\group.mdb. This share must be available to all users who need access to the group worksheet, including the administrator.

If you create the group worksheet using a drive letter and path, this information is copied into the local worksheets that are subsequently created. Then, when the user opens his local worksheet, this path that is used to locate the worksheet may not be available. Using the Group Worksheet

Group members can view the items in the group worksheet but cannot change them. Only the administrator can access and use the group worksheet unless he or she has made the password known to the other group members. As a user, you work on the points of interest allocated to you in your own local user worksheet.

When your points of interest are merged into the group worksheet, those changes are deleted from your local worksheet. If any points of interest are not merged into the group worksheet, they are left in the local worksheet. This means that you should check your worksheet after is has been merged and investigate any points of interest remaining. Viewing the Group Worksheet

The administrator informs each group member about:

Group members can then load the local worksheet with the assigned entries and the group worksheet opens automatically.

Figure 5-2 shows an example group worksheet:

Group w/s

Figure 5-2: Group Worksheet

5.7.2 User Worksheets

As a group member, you cannot directly change information in the group worksheet unless you have been supplied with the correct password to access the group worksheet. Your local user worksheet displays all of the points of interest in the group worksheet.

Each candidate that has been assigned to a local user appears twice in the local worksheet, one with a worksheet description of GROUP and the other LOCAL. A local user can only work on the points of interest with a worksheet description of LOCAL.

A user in a group can:

Saving Changes

When you change your local worksheet, the changes are automatically saved. The group administrator can then take your worksheet and merge it into the group worksheet.

When your entries are merged into the group worksheet, those changes are deleted from your local worksheet. If any entries are not merged for some reason, such as they conflict with existing entries, those entries are left in the worksheet. This means that you should check your worksheet after it has been merged and investigate any entries that were not merged.

Refreshing the Worksheet View

The administrator might update the group worksheet with others' changes while you are working. To update your view of the worksheet, right-click in the worksheet and click Refresh.

5.8 Worksheet Resilience to Changed Source and Database

A group or local worksheet is completely tied to a project. If you modify or reparse the project's source files, the worksheet will become out of step with the source files or the Revolve database. When you next try to open the worksheet, the Worksheet Synchronization Wizard will warn you if it is out of step with the Revolve database, and will attempt to resynchronize it. Synchronization will not be able to resolve worksheet POIs that are no longer identifiable in the Revolve database, so do not edit or change the version of source files within a project after you have created a worksheet.

The worksheet survives a reparse of the Revolve database as long as the application source files are the same. This enables you to upgrade the base Revolve and reload unchanged source files into a project without having to create a new worksheet.

5.9 Customizing Worksheet Classifications

Points of interest in a project can be classified at the time of adding items to the worksheet in one of the following ways:

Group users need to use the same classifications in the same ways so that, for example, final reports contain accurate information for each category. The administrator can customize the default settings for classifications for everyone to use using a settings database. For further information about customizing, see the section Sharing Worksheet Classifications in the chapter Administering Group Working.

5.9.1 Settings Databases

Settings databases allow you to share worksheet classifications, filters and assignment rules between several worksheets. You can choose how you want to share the settings between the worksheets. For example, you could share the same set of classifications between all worksheets in a project or between all worksheets related to a particular analysis task. Default Settings Database

When you create a new worksheet, information from a default settings database, if available, is automatically imported into the worksheet. You can place a default settings database in any of the following locations:

A settings database file can have any name you choose, but if you place a settings database in one of these directories, you must call it Settings.mdb, otherwise it cannot be found. If you have more than one default settings database, the first one that is found in the order listed above is used.

When a settings database is found, its location is stored in the new worksheet, and the new worksheet becomes linked to the settings database. Once a worksheet is linked to a settings database, you are informed, when opening the worksheet, if information in the settings database has changed You are then offered the opportunity to import changes from the settings database into your worksheet.

Note: When a settings database is imported automatically in this way: Importing and Exporting Information from a Settings Database

You can import settings from a settings database or another worksheet and change the settings database that the current worksheet is linked to. You can select the type of settings that you want to import, for example, only categories.

Similarly, you can export settings from the current worksheet into a new settings database, selecting the types of setting you want to export.

To update the settings in an existing settings database, you should import the existing settings into an empty worksheet, making sure you select the Replace existing settings option from the Import Options dialog, then make your changes and export the updated settings to the settings database.

5.9.2 Categories

Categories are allocated to the points of interest in the worksheet, perhaps to indicate how they were found or the type of work required to overcome the problems.

There is a set of default settings in the settings database, settings.mdb that you can customize by adding new ones, removing unwanted ones and refining the descriptions.

For more details look up Category in the online help index.

Users in a group project need to use the same categories in the same ways, otherwise, the final reports produced will not contain accurate or meaningful summaries for each category. An administrator usually organizes this. For further information, see the section Sharing Worksheet Classifications in the chapter Administering Group Working.

5.9.3 Notes

When you add points of interest to the worksheet, you can add a note to describe, for example, the origin of the items or why they are being added. Reasons for ascribing notes will differ according to the individual organization and project requirements.

Revolve Enterprise Edition can remember recently used notes. The precise number of notes to remember can be adjusted. See Notes in the online help index for further details.

5.9.4 Removal Reasons

When you remove points of interest from the worksheet, you can add a note to explain why they are being removed. This note is automatically added to the Removal Reasons list.

When working in a group, the default list is copied from the group worksheet to the local worksheet when the local worksheet is created. Subsequent changes to the removal reasons in the group worksheet are not copied to the local worksheets.

5.9.5 Data Types and Assignment Rules

Data types:

Generally, the set of data types that you use depends on a combination of the task you are performing and the nature of the application on which you are working.

There are no data types supplied with Revolve Enterprise Edition. For guidance on creating data types see the section Creating, Maintaining and Allocating Data Types.

Assignment rules are used when you elect to allocate data types automatically and they enable you to specify the likely data type for a data item given a specific set of circumstances. Examples:

There are no assignment rules supplied with Revolve Enterprise Edition. For guidance on creating them, see the section Defining Assignment Rules. Creating, Maintaining and Allocating Data Types

To be allocated a data type automatically, the item must also fulfil the requirements of the assignment rules. For example, Creating and Maintaining Data Types

The characteristics of data types are refined by the assignment rules used to allocate them automatically when a set is added to the worksheet. If you find that many items have no data type or that data types are being incorrectly allocated, it might be that you need to modify the assignment rules. For example, you can apply weightings to the assignment rules so that, although a data item satisfies several assignment rules, the data type with the highest weighting can be selected as the best match.

See the section Defining Assignment Rules for information about developing assignment rules.

Use Administration > Worksheet Properties and then Data types to view the data types file and optionally add new entries or select existing ones to amend or delete.

Figure 5-3: Add, Edit and Delete Data Types

For more details on data types, click Help in the top right corner and click the field on which you want help.

Note: To assign data types to data items automatically when you add them to the worksheet, check Assign data type when adding data items to worksheet on the Administration>Worksheet Properties >Assignment Rules tab. You can also weight each rule to indicate those that are more likely to be accurate, with 100 being the most likely. Allocating Data Types

The use of data types implicitly allows consistency checks to be applied to the logical flow of information through a system. To continue with the example of data items of type Currency, other data items used to process currency values might be required to meet the same constraints, so a data item that fails to do so can be flagged for attention.

Data types can be allocated when you add a set to the worksheet either automatically or manually. Alternatively, you can scan the worksheet for items without a data type and add them manually on an individual basis. A data type cannot be allocated to a data item if the size of the data item does not match the range specified for the data type. Defining Assignment Rules

Assignment rules refine the characteristics of data types when you add a set to the worksheet. If you find that many items have no data type or that data types are being incorrectly allocated, it might be that you need to modify the assignment rules. For example, you can apply weightings to the assignment rules so that the data type with the highest weighting can be selected as the best match.

Use Administration>Worksheet Properties >Assignment Rules to define the rules that map a data item to a data type. This dialog also controls automatic data type allocation:

Rule configuration

Figure 5-4: Add, Edit and Delete Assignment Rules

Data types are held in the worksheet together with the assignment rules. If you have group working, you can store your customized data types and assignment rules in the group worksheet and/or local worksheets.

For details on how to configure the assignment rules, click Help in the top right corner and click the field on which you want help.

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