Roambi Cardex Best Practices

RoamBi Cardex couples a file cabinet paradigm with interactive data visualization technology to create an innovative view for navigating cards containing any combination of charts. Browse a dimension (employees, customers, products, etc) with the swipe of a finger and then drill into a card containing detailed information effortlessly. Limit your Cardex results with personalized filters or search capabilities making it easier than ever to access information with your fingertips. Whether you’re managing personnel or sales pipeline through live connectivity with, RoamBi Cardex provides a portable index of any important information you need to make important decisions.

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Example Use Cases
Cardex is an excellent View for organizing categorized content like contacts, customers, or any information where you require up to date data or a quick reference while away from your PC. Whether you are a consulting services provider using Cardex to organize project pipeline, or a healthcare administrator responsible for regional quality of care, Cardex is a perfect solution for accessing information with your fingertips. For example, a healthcare administrator can use Cardex to organize all hospitals in the Los Angeles territory categorized by hospital ownership. Flipping through the Cardex, you can access any hospital, and with a tap of the finger access key contact information, navigate to a hospital’s location in Google Maps for directions, or reference critical quality care measures within seconds. Using Cardex, you are empowered to conduct business functions easier than ever regardless of your role within your organization.

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RoamBi Cardex Features
Aside from the sleek aesthetics and thoughtful design execution RoamBi Cardex’s features:

  • Innovative navigation uses swipe gesture capabilities that can be accelerated using the Cardex scroll bar.
  • Categorized card hierarchy can group cards together based on a dimension value, making them easy to navigate.
  • Integrated search provide instant access to a specific card on demand.
  • Filters can be personalized for any combination of dimensions to present only the cards you desire within your Cardex view (figure 1).
  • Robust charting library including a line chart, bar chart, area chart, column chart, stacked column chart, combination chart, pie chart, and data table (figure 2 & 3).
  • Careful consideration to screen real estate and performance simplifies the aesthetics and alleviates clutter as you scroll top to bottom within the detail view.
  • Expanded interaction windows for most charts enable you to interact with each chart to obtain values within each series.
  • Integrated tap to dial for phone numbers and Google Map integration for addresses.
  • Bookmarking option saves your place so you can re-call it at anytime.

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Data Visualization Best Practices
Cardex introduces a simple navigation paradigm for accessing categorized cards with two levels of hierarchy such as manager and subordinate, or state and city. The top level navigation is denoted as a red tab and the second level dictates the content on each card. As a card is selected you can view any combination of charts and tables that provide supporting information for that specific card. A Cardex that contains multiple dimensions like region, facility, and product could provide multiple configurations for tab and card names. To successfully create a Cardex view you must carefully choose how to categorize the cards which will affect the user experience. With a configured hierarchy you can customize the detail card to display the most important supporting information required. Understanding best practices for assigning data groups to charts will impact your ability to communicate and interpret information. Below are best practices for implementing charts within the Cardex detail card.

roambiLine charts are best applied for consecutive interval metrics which are typically time-based (month, day, etc). The benefit of using a line chart is its effectiveness to communicate trends over time.

roambi Data tables are best applied displaying data where there is no value or need for quantitative analysis. For applications that contain multiple measures that are related for analysis, a data table is the perfect solution to display the data.

roambiBar/Column charts are the most widely used charts for consuming quantitative information when there is a single dimension (products, employees, regions, etc) with one or multiple like-measures (sales, costs, etc). Both bar and column charts are extremely effective for representing quantitative information using the relative bar size against a common axis and scale to provide powerful comparative analysis. Choosing between a RoamBi Data Bar and column chart should be dictated by the number of measures to visualize and desire to display dimension axis labels without further interaction.

roambiThe Data Bar chart will plot one data group (series) in a horizontal orientation with the dimension values (y axis label) displayed to the left of each bar. Tapping on the title will auto expand larger titles, and tapping on any bar will display the data values in place of bars. The Column chart will accommodate the same analysis with an option to add an additional series.
roambiStacked column charts are effective for displaying multiple parts of a whole, similar to a pie chart, but across a series. A stacked column chart emphasizes the whole, while enabling you to visualize the distribution of values within each bar.

roambiCombination charts work similar to multiple series column charts with an option to transform one series into a line trend rather than a bar. The purpose for implementing a combination chart is to draw attention to a series where a trend is present. A combination chart is typically used when there is a calculation or target trend corresponds to the accompanying bars.

roambiPie charts can be implemented as an alternative to a single series column or bar chart, though pie charts should display all parts (slices) required to represent a whole. As the volume of pie chart slices (dimension values) increase, the difficulty of interpreting information and deriving value from the chart decreases. Like the RoamBi Pie View, this pie chart will automatically aggregate all remaining values into an “Other” category, once the pie chart exceeds 10 slices.

roambiArea charts are line charts with extended shading to emphasize a two dimensional space that the trend occupies. While one or two series can effectively communicate this information, as the number of series increase the shading can cause interference as the shaded areas overlap.

Implementation Best Practices
While RoamBi provides tremendous flexibility for implementing intuitive views, formatting reports and Excel worksheets that provide data require best practices that can save you valuable time, while facilitating a usable data structure for your data visualization needs. When working with Excel, all RoamBi Views require a flattened vertical table where any combination of columns can be grouped and then assigned to charts and tables within the view.

By default the first row in most RoamBi Views is used to assign group names, while the second row identifies the column titles. To streamline the process for defining groups, during the import step within RoamBi Designer, define the first two rows as your titles.

roambiRoamBi Cardex will default to the first column for the tab title, which identifies the first level of hierarchy and designates tabs within the user interface (figure 4).

roambiThe card title defaults to the second column within your data, and signifies each individual card within the tabbed navigation (figure 5).

Once the tab and card titles are identified, you can create layout groups which can be assigned to any RoamBi chart. To successfully create a chart within the detail card, you need to create groups within the RoamBi Publisher layout tab containing at least two columns containing the same numeric formatting. If either column contains text values or inconsistent number formatting characters ($, %, etc), RoamBi will not enable charting capabilities for that group.

For a complete guide of how to assign data groups to the best possible chart for visualizing quantitative data, see RoamBi Data Visualization Best Practices.

Data Formatting
Applying number formatting to data: RoamBi is intelligent enough to interpret multiple data formats from reports and Excel files. When applying number formatting, you want to ensure that each column only contains a single numeric format ($, %, “,”, etc).

Addresses: When formatting addresses in RoamBi for automatic linking to Google Maps, you will want to input addresses as “Address, City, State abbreviation” (34555 N. 5th Pl., San Diego, CA).

Phone Numbers: RoamBi is intelligent to recognize most variations for displaying phone numbers both for domestic and international phone numbers. It is a best practice to refrain from using decimal separators in phone numbers to avoid RoamBi mistaking the phone number for a standard numeric value. Valid Examples: 123-456-7890 (123)456-7890 + 22 607 123 4567

Email addresses: RoamBi will invoke your iPhone email upon selecting text formatted as an email address without applying any extra formatting.

Websites: Open Safari browser by tapping on any URLs where the text starts with www or http.


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