There are several advantages to linking your Google Account to Mindmatters. You can manage files directly from Google Drive, create new diagrams as well as save and share
content without restriction as well is quickly import image resources etc. You can attach one or more spreadsheets to your diagrams and create front end, data driven templates. You can synchronize data across devices
and you can publish creations to our hosting servers with a permanent URL.
The Google "sign in" and "sign out" buttons are located in the message bar, above the App.
The first time you use your Google Account to sign in to Mindmatters you will be asked to grant the necessary permissions. Mindmatters only uses your account
information to manage the app and does not disclose information to third parties.
When the sign in process is complete a message will be logged.
Working locally or on Google Drive
When you create a new diagram from within Mindmatters, the data is stored within your browser and Google Drive is not used. It can be converted by exporting the file
to Google Drive and opening it from there. Likewise files can be imported from Google Drive and be converted to locally stored file types.
Users can create a blank Google Drive file from the Google Drive user interface once Mindmatters has been granted your sign in permissions.
There are obvious advantages to working with Google Drive files. They are easier to share and not subject to data loss when Browser storage is cleared.
There are some advantages too, though, from merging from the library locally.
Backing up creations and storing final versions in Google Drive while retaining only required content locally will speed loading times and aid performance.
Switching between types
Exporting local files
Choose Google Drive during the export process will create a new file called "Export.mmcf" in the root folder of your
Drive account. When the export has been completed you will get a system message and the file will appear in your Drive view.
Note: The created Export is a snapshot, your current open version will remain the version you are editing. Open the newly created Export to work with the Google Drive file.
Importing Google Drive files
temporarySECTION WILL REMAIN INCOMPLETE PENDING A FEATURE ADDITION / BUG FIX
Adding a Spreadsheet as a Data Source
Users can connect and disconnect data sources to their diagrams from the Main Control Panel
From the data manager (and while logged in to a Google Account) pressing the "pick" button will open the Google file picker. Select the spreadsheet you wish to use
as a data source.
The sheet tabs of the selected spreadsheet will populate the "Sheet Name" drop down list. Use the "Add Source" button to add every/any desired sheet. There are no fixed
limits to the number of spreadsheets or spreadsheet pages that you can add. Data from any ranges within these sheets can be used to populate text, tables and charts.
Swapping Data Sources
Data Sources can be swapped, sheet by sheet, to enable swift updates when creating presentation templates. Eg Monthly Reports where the spreadsheet structure is identical
Select the source to be changed in the "From" drop down and the
source with which it is to be replaced in the "To" drop down and click "Swap Source". All data references will be automatically updated.
Setting data from a spreadsheet range
Text, Tables and Charts (Series and Axis) can all be linked to read spreadsheet data. When presented with the option to read a data source, the Data menu is shown
Data can be set manually from this menu, or users can choose to add a range from a Data Source linked to the digram.
Data ranges are entered as they would be in Excel/GoogleSheets using A1 notation. Ie A two column, ten row range may be A1:B10
When spreadsheets are updated, Mindmatters requests a change flag and updates were the new data is received from Google Drive. You can force an update by repeating the
data setting process.
temporaryNamed Ranges and Static data options are not yet implemented.
Setting text from a range
After setting a text to read from a datasource the text control will be updated but disabled and manual entry will not be possible.
To re-enable manual editing set the text's data source to "No Source".
Working with Tables
When a table component is added to an existing shape, it has a number of default settings (and data) that can be changed with the Table Editor Menu
The top section of controls controls how the Table behaves as the shape is resized, like other component types
The next section contains the set data command that will allow you to set a data source or enter data manually (see below for more information). Additionally row and
column data can be flipped for easy formatting.
This section of controls deals with the appearance of the cells, rows and columns of the table. First users can decide to apply the "header" style to either, neither
or both of the first row or column.
Users can also set a "corner" angle, similar to rounded rectangular shapes they form cells with rounded corners corresponding to the values set. Users can set spacing,
to create a separation between rows and/or columns.
Finally, from this section, users can set the border colour and widths of "ordinary" cells as well as highlighted rows (table highlighting applies to published creations
and more details are contained in later topics).
The next section of controls determines the width and height distributions of individual rows and columns as a proportion of the table's height and width.
By default both columns and rows are distributed automatically. To change this, untick either or both tick boxes.
Then replace any "a" (automatic) with a value between 1 and 100 indicating the percentage of available space that row or column should occupy.
Controls completed as they are in this example would describe a table with equally distributed rows. The first column occupying 50% of the table with and the remaining
two columns sharing the remaining 50% space.
The final section contains the row styling controls. From here the fill and text styles for differing rows can be created. Creating multiple base styles will cause
them to be reused consecutively; this allows the creation of single style tables, alternating lines or more complex repeating colours.
Using Multiple Styles and Multiple Tables
Shapes can contain multiple tables and diagrams can hold as many shapes as you need. So highly stylized designs can be created by combining multiple tables and/or shapes.
This example shows a simulated colour chart by combining multiple charts in a single shape, setting percentage heights and widths and then using the "order" positioning commands.
Setting Table Data Manually
As for all items that can be connected to a data source, it is also possible to enter data manually. For tables each row (including any header row data) is
surrounded by square brackets with each row separated by a comma. Each cell within a table is also separated by a comma. Data for this table can be entered as
[Heading A,Heading B,Heading C],[1,2,3],[4,4,4],[5,6,7],[8,9,10],[11,12,13]
temporaryManually entering incorrectly formatted data can result in a error requiring a page refresh.
Blank Entries and Empty Data Ranges
Empty rows and columns in Excel or Google Sheets spreadsheets are always included as empty cells in MindMatters tables. To trim blank lines the range reference would need to be updated.
Manually entering data, however, even retaining the data string generated by reading the spreadsheet, will see blank rows (empty square brackets) ignored.
To maintain blank rows add a non printing, like a space, to the empty brackets.
new Conditional Row Formatting
Conditional statements can be applied to Table row formats. When ...
Working with Charts
There are several elements to the chart editing menu. This figure shows the settings for an example pie charts and the following section will break each part down
with instructions on how to implement all different options.
The top section of the control sets the size of the chart, proportional to the shape and whether it should resize as the shape does.
The mid section contains all controls relevant to the charts axes.
A chart can contain multiple axis and they can be selected, added and deleted from these controls. The settings for the axis currently selected in the dropdown are
displayed on the form.
Multiple axis support showing series on the same chart, at two different scales.
The axis scale and labels button will open a new form (details below) and the buffer control gives an additional fine tune option for charts on linear scales to
help prevent series markers overflowing the plot area. The buffer will effect all series on the selected axis.
A chart axis can be one of two types; Linear (line) or Radial. Linear axis are the most common type and are used for everything from most common chart types (line, area,
bar charts, scatterplots etc).
Radial plots are used for circular axis, like pie charts and spider plots.
Swapping axis (on a Linear axis) will cause data to be plotted along the y axis, instead of along the x axis. This example shows a switched axis. With markers changed
from "Columns" to "Bars".
Stacking Axis and Fixing Y Values
Stacking axis (on a Linear axis) causes series values to be cumulatively added. This allows all series to be converted stacked series chart plots.
Fixing Y-Values serves a number of purposes. With stacked series fixing Y values turns the chart into a proportional stacked series.
Stacked A Fixed
Stacked B Fixed
Pie Charts also rely on having Fixed Y Plot values to display properly.
Axis Minimum, Maximums and Graphics
Axis value parameters can be set from this section. There are a combination of methods to set minimum and maximum display. It is generally safest to fix the minimum
value at 0 and allow the chart to automatically rescale based on data by providing no maximum value parameters (ie leaving blank fields)
Axis graphics gives a limited range of axis customisation options for Radial Axis types. The colour and thickness of the plot points can be shown for charts like
spider plots. Or hidden for Pie Charts.
Chart Axis Scales and Labels
Clicking the "Edit Axis Scale and Labels" button opens a new menu.
The Axis Scale controls the display of Y Axis values, including font size and position. The Axis Scale Interval dictates the spacing and frequency of the labels.
Ie a scale interval of "5" would have a label for every five units on the Y Axis.
Axis display lines can be controlled in the same way via the Line Interval control.
Labels control the X Axis plot labels. Names can be entered manually (each entry separated by a comma) or they can be linked to a spreadsheet range.
Chart Axis Data
Data can be assigned to the X Axis in addition to, or instead of, Y Axis. Pie Charts and Scatterplots require X Axis data. The Axis data copies data from any
provided data if none is set (ie for easy Pie Chart creation).
Axis data can also be set from a Data Source or entered manually. Axis and Series data should be a comma
separated list of numerical values.
A list of series plotted on any axis in the chart and the option to add additional series is shown at the bottom of the main chart editing form.
Basic editing options are provided for each series (the axis on which the series is plotted, the basic display type and basic marker type) as well as the option
to open the Series Editor form for each series for a greater range of configuration options.
Series data can also be accessed and set from this area.
Chart Series Editing
The Series Editor offers a more complete range of options than the Chart Editor. From here data can be set, the series can be deleted or the user can return
to the Chart Editor. The Form is otherwise in three sections; Display Settings, Series Marker Settings and the Data Point Editor.
Series Display Settings
The plot type can be set from the Display section to either None, a Line or an Area. Colour and size can also be set.
The "Plot Start" control allows users to alter the first position of the series drawing point.
"Auto Colour" means that a series (and/or the series markers) mean that new series are auto colored in fixed sequence. Colour settings
cannot be edited unless Auto Colour is turned off.
Series Markers and Data Points
The Data Markers sections contains a number of controls that allow a number of pre-configured markers to mark data points. Some markers are suited for use
with other chart options. Ie Radial Pins or Pie Slices on charts with a Radial Axis. Or Bars on x-Axis plotted charts compared to Columns for standard linear axis.
See the Plot Types and Settings Reference guide below for full details.
Data point markers uses optional Auto Colouring, but also has an additional "Match All" control. With Auto Colour turned on, but Match All turned off each data marker will
have distinct fill and line colours.
Editing series markers will over ride any individual settings you may have set. It is advisable to complete changes to this section, before editing individual markers.
Through the Marker Editor form the marker for each individual point can be customised with options similar to those for Markers in general.
In addition to the standard options, it is also possible to set an uploaded image as a Data Point marker. After selecting an image from the image library,
the size and position can be set from this form.
Chart Series Data and Data Labels
Chart Series Data can be entered manually or linked to a Datasource Range using methods previously described. Manually entered data should be a list of comma separated,
Data labels can be displayed instead of, or in addition to, graphical marker points. As well as font and position controls users are also able to use a number
of special characters that will be calculated from the data set.
Replaced with the data point value
Replaced with the cumulative value of series values at this data point (for this axis)
Replaced with the % of the total for this datapoint as a proportion of this axis
Replaced with the % of the data point as a proportion of the series total
Common Chart Plot Types and Settings Reference
Popular chart choices, and the settings needed to create them, are given below. Note, this is not an exhaustive list and other combinations are possible.