Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
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FIguRE 2-11 The values True and False are difficult to decode without a description.
Ask yourself this question: What do the labels False and True mean in the report? You can
assign a meaning to False only if you remember that its value comes from the OnlineOrderFlag
but, in the report itself, there is no clear evidence of the fact that the value True means The
order has been placed online . Clearly, having a different and more understandable description
would greatly improve the report readability.
Note Please note that the OnlineOrderFlag is not a technical column. Its description is cryptic,
but we definitely want to slice data using this column. So we are not going to hide the column at
all. Instead, we will provide it a better description so that the field is more user friendly.
So we are going to describe some standard techniques to show ONLINE ORDER when the
value of the column is True and INTERNAL ORDER when the value is False. In order to
perform this task, you have two choices:
You can add a new calculated column to the OrderDetails table, assigning to it a
descriptive value for the OnlineOrderFlag. Then you can hide the TRUE/FALSE column and
provide only the new column for filtering and slicing.
You can add a new table to the data model, which has a TRUE/FALSE column as the
key and another column that holds the description. Then you can create a relationship
between OrderDetails and this new table to let PowerPivot slice the original data with
this new table.
Both these operations deal with a much wider topic— data modeling . Because they are both
interesting and instructive solutions, we describe both of them, first to get a feeling of what
a data model is and also to see how a good data model might affect the user experience.
We cover data models in full detail in Chapter 4, “Data Models.” Nevertheless, this first look
now is useful for understanding data models.
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