Overview of Filters and Parameters

Arcadia Instant uses filters and parameters to change the analysis criteria at run-time. Within a visual, the information on the filter shelf defines the section of data used to build the chart. Within dashboards, filter widgets and custom filter widgets specify parameters that control the information displayed in the dashboard visuals, based on the specified syntax. Filter Scope determines the level at which the filters are active.

Filter Shelves

Filters define the subsets of data that is examined in a visual.

By placing either measures or dimensions on the Filter shelf of the visual, you can exclude or include specific values or a range of values represented by the column. Subsequently, the filter is specified by one of two methods:

  • Selecting value or values from a list, or through an interface specific to the data type
  • Specifying an expression that represents the filtering function, which is what we discuss in the Syntax for Using Parameterssyntax section.

Syntax for Using Parameters

Note the following syntax format options:

  • This following syntax supplies the value of the output parameter variable to the visual, and may be defined by url parameters, clicked values within dashboards, or single value/textbox picklists.

    <<variable:default-value>>

    Here are some examples of how a value may be defined:

    • By functions and expressions, such as

      (<<function:sum>>(1))
    • By fields, such as

      (<<field_name:[dimension_column]>>)
    • By discrete values, such as

      (<<states:'AL'>>)
  • User-defined picklists also emit an alias parameter:

    <<variable.alias:default-value>>
  • When dashboard filters function in multi-select mode, you must also specify the include-exclude operators:

    <<variable.data:'defalut-value'>>
    <<variable.exclude:default-value>>
  • For date-range functions, the filter expression that uses a timestamp variable ts has the following pattern:

    [ts] between <<ts.start:"2013-08-03">> and <<ts.end:"2014-04-28">>
  • When the dashboard filter is multi-select, you must use different parameters.

    • The selected values are available through the following expression:

      <<variable.data:default-value>>
    • When implementing the include or exclude operator in a multi-select filter, use the following expression:

      <<variable.exclude:default-value>>
  • To customize the title of any visual, you can change its name to include a parameter. For example, in Creating Visuals with Variable Dimensions, we demonstrate this by changing the visual title to Population by <<dim>>, where dim is the name of the parameter.

Filter Widgets

A filter is a control element that is tied to underlying column values from a table.

While building a dashboard, on the Filters menu click either a Dimension or a Measures field. This adds the filter widget to the filters area of the dashboard. Alternatively, you can add a custom filter to the dashboard by clicking Create Custom Filter.

Select (Settings) on the filter widget, and configure the options.

Note that for target visuals, you must place the corresponding measure or dimension on the Filters shelf.

The Custom Filters extend the concept of filters by passing any value, including arbitrary values, to the visuals.

While building a dashboard, on the Filters menu click Create Custom Filter. Select (Settings) on the filter widget, and configure the options.

After you define a custom filter, you can use it on the shelves of the visuals to dynamically update the output.