3 Replies Latest reply on Jun 22, 2016 8:05 AM by Asle Frantzen

    ProcessBook displays with multiple contexts and context handlers?

    Asle Frantzen

      So today's challenge needs to be run through some extra heads before I start testing:

       

      A client in the T&D industry has two 55" full HD screens where they want to display one or more ProcessBook displays. The solution involves using the ERD menu to select the context for the initial display, let's call this regions of a country. Once the region display has been opened they want to list the status of all their substation with color coding, and this is easy - I've put that in place with a grid component. But once they click the stations in that list they want to open the substation detail display in screen number 2.

       

      So I'm pondering how to implement this. I know that the ERD system only handles one context at a time, but I also know I can implement my own context handlers using VBA code. The question is whether or not this'll help me. I want end users (well, super users at least) to be able to keep editing my display, using some sort of known syntax when they add more attributes to their display.

       

      What would it take to get something like this working?

       

      If I want to keep using the E.AttributeName syntax I'd be stuck with the original context of the region display, and not the substation context I need. I could set it programmatically, because all previous experience doing that is that the ERD add-in does not reflect these changes.

      An alternative could be to implement all value symbols using their actual attribute name in AF, and then programatically update the value configuration using the context (from my grid component) + the attribute name. (Ex: AF2.\\AFServer\database\path\to\element|AttributeName)

      Another alternative: the E in E.AttributeName seems to be implemented as a dataset in ProcessBook. I've previously written a RegressionLine dataset addin, so I'm somewhat familiar with doing that. I could implement my own E2 dataset, which handles a secondary element of interest for these few displays.

       

      Would be interested in any feedback!

       

      Thanks!

        • Re: ProcessBook displays with multiple contexts and context handlers?
          pthivierge

          Hello Asle,

           

          One idea I have is to use 2 ProcessBook instances instead of only one.  This way you can make use of 2 ERDs.

          The "tricky" part then is to pass the new path, when clicked, to the other PB instance so you can change it. I was thinking of the DDE protocol, but I dont know if this is available for PB.

          A very basic ( not sexy ) method would be to poll a file or a database, that would work for sure.

           

          This method would have the advantage of sticking with mostly basic functionalities, as you were requesting super users to be in best position to manage the displays.

           

          Hope this helps and I am curious to see what you end up with!

          • Re: ProcessBook displays with multiple contexts and context handlers?
            Gael

            Hi Asle,

             

            Maybe you've already checked this approach: you are able to read an attribute on a child parent E..\ChildAttribute|AttributeName.

            You can also create an additional AF architecture/view (using reference elements) and put the region element under each substation. Just an idea…

             

            Regards

            Gael

            1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • Re: ProcessBook displays with multiple contexts and context handlers?
              Asle Frantzen

              Hi guys

               

              Thanks for the input! Given the time allotted for this job I had to simplify it, but the solution is still good.

               

              Instead of using the ERD menu for the regions, and a secondary context for the substation display part, I let the substation be the element of interest and create buttons for navigating between the few region displays. There's only four regions (= not too much copy/paste work) so it's manageable.

               

              To get my list of substations directly in the display I use a grid component, which also shows traffic light style KPI's. This list is clickable and changes the context of the display, meaning I can hide the ERD menu to get more screen real-estate.

               

              But I like your tip on getting attributes from children/parent elements using the E.-notation, Gael. I haven't used that before, actually!