With think-cell, you can easily and quickly create a linear process flow which consists of pentagons, chevrons and textboxes:. You start creating a process flow by inserting its first pentagon. The orange insertion outline of the pentagon appears on the slide next to the mouse cursor. You will also notice grey borders on your slide which correspond to the PowerPoint placeholders of your chosen layout from the master slide.
Click anywhere within the borders you want to insert the element into. The element is automatically selected after insertion and text can be entered directly into it. The size of the pentagon is automatically adapted as you type. When you click on it, the element and its text are duplicated to the corresponding side, and the duplicate is automatically aligned.
Alternatively, you can also hold down the Ctrl and Alt keys and press one of the arrow keys to duplicate in that direction. A pentagon becomes a chevron if necessary. You can also do this for a multi-selection of elements.
When you are done, click into each pentagon or chevron to insert or edit the text. Holding the Alt key down and hitting the arrow keys lets you easily move from one element to another. A row of text boxes is inserted below—aligned with the elements above. Select the first column of text boxes with your mouse:. An aligned duplicate of your first column will appear. Click into each text box of the first column and type in "What", "How", and "Who".
You can fill in the rest of your text box table with content the same way:. The size and position of the individual text boxes and the whole flow automatically adapt to the text that you enter.
Deleting individual text boxes, entire rows, or columns is as easy as inserting them. Just select the text box or multi-select the row or column you want to delete, and hit the Delete key. Holding down the Shift key only allows horizontal dragging, which makes it easy to find the correct insertion point between two columns.
We recommend that you use automatic placement, as it will save you a lot of time and will produce a balanced slide layout. You can, however, manually determine a specific position and maximum size for your process flow if you prefer.
To do so, select the entire flow. They can be used to constrain the size and position of the process flow or any other element for that matter. A lock icon is shown in the ruler area at the currently chosen position. The ruler itself does not need to be visible. Repeat this for the right margin by dragging the rightmost lock icon into position.
There are also locks for the vertical dimensions of the flow, which can be similarly used. Repeat this for each lock that has been placed on the ruler. Now that you have positioned and resized it, you can add the finishing touches to your process flow by styling it. Left-click into each pentagon and chevron and select the color you want from the fill color dropdown menu of the floating toolbar see Color and fill.
You can also change the line color and line style of the pentagons. Multi-select all pentagons, left-click into the selection, open the outline color drop-down menu and change the line color, for example, to Background 1 see Outline colors. Left-click into the selection again, open the line style drop-down menu, and change the line style to 3 pt solid for a thick outline see Line style.
To boost the readability of your flow, you may also assign alternating background colors to rows or columns with the Striping function. Just select the textboxes you would like to fill and left-click into any of them to open the floating toolbar.
Open the Striping dropdown menu and click on Vertical Stripes for alternating column shading, or Horizontal Stripes for row shading.Naturally, in a project timeline the scale is based on dates. With think-cell, you can quickly change the visible date range. The appearance of the scale is initially automatic, but can be manually modified if needed.
When inserting a new project timeline, the calendar is initially scaled to show some time before and some time after the current date. There are two ways to change the date range that is shown.
Alternatively, if you only need to adjust the beginning or the end of the range, you can simply change these values with the mouse:. While dragging the handles, they snap to integral units of the selected scale. You can quickly expand the chart to cover a large date range by dragging the handles of a scale with large units e.
When changing the date range or the size of a chart, some scales as well as vertical separator lines may appear or disappear. Based on the range you select, together with the chart size and font size, think-cell suggests appropriate scales and separators to show.
To make good use of this function, you should first select the desired date range before manually adding or removing scales or separators. Altogether, there are five scales available in the project timeline chart: Years, quarters, months, weeks and days. In addition to showing or hiding scales, think-cell supports several options to change the look of the calendar. All of these settings are available in the menu Scaleslocated in the floating toolbar of the Gantt chart or one of the currently visible scales.
Each scale supports various ways to display date information, e. To do so, select the scale with the mouse and use the floating toolbar that appears to select the desired format. Since the dropdown menu is actually a date format control see Date format controlyou can also type in arbitrary date format strings.
Note: As with other labels, you can add arbitrary text to the scale labels, such as footnote markers or short comments. Each scale supports an optional label and optional separator lines. To use these features, open the context menu for the desired scale with a right-click. Note: Primary and secondary separator lines are automatically assigned different styles.
A project timeline is made up of rows, each representing a certain activity that is named in the label to the left. The rows, in turn, contain timeline items such as bars, milestones and brackets. Note: There is a special row below the chart reserved for the most important milestones. You cannot add bars to this row, you cannot move it by drag-and-drop, and you cannot delete it.
Otherwise, it is just an additional activity row which is always there. If all other rows are deleted, there is still the extra row left at the very bottom of the chart which you can click to open the context menu and create new rows.
This way you can add rows and keep typing without reaching for the mouse. The keyboard shortcut for deletion is Delete. Each row not only contains timeline items — bars, process arrows, milestones, brackets — but can also have up to three labels, a horizontal separator line, and row shading. The labels and decorations are added and removed using the think-cell context menu.Stacked charts seem simple, but labeling, axes breaks and additional decorations can still take a lot of time.
This video shows how think-cell helps in this regard and can therefore save you time even in case of common chart types. To create a waterfall chart simply enter the values to add. Positive values build up, negative values build down. For additional flexibility, you can interactively reattach the reference connector of each segment to change the order of summation.
As seen in this video the chart is completely calendar-based and supports a variety of decorations and labels. With think-cell you can forget about labeling scatter and bubble charts by hand. This is done automatically — even with two independent labels per scatter point or bubble.
This video shows how to create a scatter chart within seconds and how to turn it into a bubble chart by adding Z-values. This video demonstrates the automatic labeling capabilities of pie charts. You can rotate and explode pie segments by simply dragging their handles to anchor points at 0, 90, or degrees. You can also create break-out charts with the help of universal connectors.
This video demonstrates some of the line chart's advanced options such as a secondary value axis, interpolation, error bars and date-based axis formatting. And of course, you can combine line series with segment series to create combination charts.
What's in the package?
You can flip most charts to combine them. This video illustrates how two charts can be adjusted to the same scale automatically. It also shows that all labels have the same functionality as PowerPoint textboxes. Clustered charts in think-cell feature the same advanced options as stacked column and bar charts. This video shows how arrows can be added that are calculated automatically and emphasize important relationships.
The think-cell datasheet is a full-featured Excel sheet. You can input either absolute values or percentages. To quickly mark elements of the same type, you can use our intelligent logical selection mechanism. This video illustrates the basics and some advanced features of think-cell's area chart, such as the date-based category axis, the customization of value axis tickmarks, axis range, grid lines and bordered plot area.
Using think-cell, you can quickly build up complex slides from text boxes. The big difference when using think-cell is that these text boxes not only snap to each other, but stay with each other, no matter what position or size they have to adopt to make their content fit.And all this with a single PowerPoint add-in.
Here are its most awe-inspiring features. If yes, you know that this doesn't work very well. If not, you might still use basic boxes and lines to draw them yourself.
You create and update calendar-based Gantt charts directly in PowerPoint. Features such as 5- or 7-day work weeks, remark and responsibility labels or time span brackets make sure that your work time on Gantts reduces to a few minutes instead of hours.
Creating waterfalls in PowerPoint is time-consuming and error-prone. You either push basic shapes around or use a hidden data row that supports floating segments.
Hence, any data change implies many manual calculations and adjustments. In think-cell, positive data values in waterfalls build up, negative values build down. This works automatically, even for stacked segments. Segments can cross the baseline and build upon segments in any category — not only the previous one. Whether it be total labels, percentages, averages, breaks, difference arrows or CAGRs — think-cell will help you to tell the story behind your data by offering dozens of data-driven visual annotations.
And what is even better: All calculations and placements are done automatically. Your derived data will always be correct and labels or arrows will never overlap. Want to show market share for different competitors and different product categories at the same time? Why not add a second dimension to your data visualization?Waterfall chart (think-cell tutorials)
A Mekko also known as Marimekko is the perfect chart for this job. Column widths are calculated automatically or can be provided by you. Values can be ordered by size and small values can be hidden in an "other" series. When it comes to slide layout in PowerPoint, all your options entail unsatisfactory compromises: You may use an inflexible PowerPoint table, combine standard text boxes and face many tedious manual adjustments, or you may use a template from PowerPoint's SmartArt or your own library and soon bump into its limitations.
Using think-cell's smart text boxes, you can quickly build up complex slides like this one. When adding text and other elements, the slide layout is continuously optimized automatically.
Meaningful actions like snapping together, aligning and moving elements define a smart grid so that you never need to place or resize shapes manually. Have you ever tried building a simple process chain in PowerPoint?
Are you still struggling with the right positioning of basic shapes or trying to combine weird SmartArt objects that never align correctly and fall apart after a few interactions?
Then meet our process flow. With it you create and change simple flows in minutes. But since it is based on a powerful generic layout engine, you are completely flexible and can build any conceptual slide based on pentagons, chevrons and text boxes. You spend hours and hours on updating charts in your reports every month? Cut down these hours to a few minutes! With think-cell's data links, every chart in your presentation can be linked to Excel and updated either manually or automatically.This chapter describes how to customize think-cell, i.
The following properties can be changed using style files: The list of available colors and patterns see Color and fill. The list of available color schemes see Color scheme. The colors of Harvey ball and checkbox see Checkbox and Harvey ball. The list of available lines styles for the line chart and all connectors. The list of available markers for line charts and scatter charts.
The first sections describe creating and loading a style file and explain how to deploy it in an organization. An understanding of these tasks is required in any case.
Afterwards, you may either follow the Style file tutorial to create your own style file or go through the format reference in Style file format. Simple modifications to an existing style file can be made using any text editor. A new think-cell style file should be created using a dedicated XML editor. It will support you by automatically checking for errors and making suggestions on how to solve them.
Our recommendation for such an editor and tips for setting it up is described at. A dedicated XML editor will typically highlight errors in your document, and with a keyboard shortcut such as Ctrl-Spacebar you can trigger auto completion : the editor will offer a choice of tags, attributes or values applicable to the current context position of the text cursor.
If you move the mouse over highlighted errors, you will get a tooltip with a detailed explanation of the error. Several sample style files are delivered together with think-cell and you can find them in the subfolder styles in the think-cell installation folder. First, find out the location of the installation folder.
The editor automatically checks your file for errors. Make sure that there are no warnings or errors indicated before you save an edited style file. Of course, any other editor that supports XML also works. The file needs to be saved with an. To load a style file, choose Load Style File In the dialog, navigate to the folder with the style file, choose the file and click Open. It is used for any new charts in the current presentation. Load Style File When the presentation is distributed as a PowerPoint template, the think-cell style is implicitly distributed as well.
Switching between styles is accomplished by switching between PowerPoint templates. It should not be necessary to give a think-cell style file to individual users. We recommend to distribute your think-cell style together with your PowerPoint template. Typically both are needed to implement your corporate design and deploying them as one is the easiest option for users.
If it is not possible to follow our recommendation to deploy the think-cell style as part of your PowerPoint template, a default style file can be specified with the defaultstyle configuration parameter see Configuration parameters. The parameter value is the path name to a valid style file.In this chapter, a step-by-step tutorial will show you how to create a chart from a scribble like this:.
13. Gantt chart (timeline)
A more elaborate presentation of the basic concepts of think-cell and details on the various chart types can be found in Basic concepts and in the following chapters. Inserting a chart into your presentation is very similar to inserting a PowerPoint shape.
Go to the think-cell group and click the Elements button. Then, select the required chart type. In our example, we want to insert a column chart, which is represented by this button:.
Once you have chosen a chart type, a rectangle will appear with the mouse pointer, indicating where the chart will be inserted on the slide. When you are inserting or resizing a chart, you will notice that it snaps to certain locations, aligning with existing objects on the slide. The chart is automatically selected after insertion, as indicated by a blue highlighted outline. If a chart you want to modify is not selected, you can select it by clicking on it.
After inserting a new column chart, both category labels and series labels are shown automatically. There are several ways to remove and add labels. The easiest way to remove a single label is to select it and press the Delete key. Read more about editing text labels in the chapter Text labels. Click the datasheet button, or simply double-click the chart, to open the datasheet.
The datasheet opens automatically after insertion of a new chart. Now, enter the data from our example column chart into the datasheet. Type in only the actual numbers. Do not round numbers or calculate totals — think-cell will do this for you. For most chart types, you can simply input the numbers the way you see them in the scribble, from left to right and from top to bottom.
The tab key Tab can be used, just as in Microsoft Excel, to conveniently move to the next column in a row, and the enter key Enter can be used to jump to the first column of the next row.
Note that the chart on the slide instantly updates to reflect the changes in the datasheet. It even grows and shrinks depending on the area of the datasheet that you use. Years are automatically inserted as category labels in the first row of the datasheet. The sequence of years is automatically continued when you start entering data in the following column. The next section explains the last few steps to finish our example chart.
Every chart element consists of a number of features. In our example, text labels and column segments are the most important features of the column chart.
Each kind of feature has a number of specific properties that you can change in order to give it a different look. You can also select multiple features at a time to change their properties together. The following screenshot shows how all column segments of the second data series highlight in orange while they are collectively selected in a Shift -click operation:. When you select features, a floating toolbar containing the corresponding property controls will appear. For the selection of column segments as illustrated above, for example, the Fill Color control becomes available in the toolbar:.
In our example, we want to change the shading of the second data series, as required by the scribble at Introduction to charting. Note that the labels automatically turn white to make them easier to read on the dark background.In think-cell, we do not distinguish between simple column charts and stacked column charts.
If you want to create a simple column chart, enter only one series row of data in the datasheet. For a quick tour of the column chart, refer to the example in the chapter Introduction to charting.
Bar charts in think-cell are simply rotated column charts, and can be used exactly as column charts. To do so, apply the functions rotation see Rotating and flipping elements and same scale see Same scale. Then remove the category labels for one of the charts. For the steps to create a stacked clustered chart, see Clustered chart. To change the column width, select a segment and drag one of the handles at half the height of the column.
The tooltip shows the resulting gap width while dragging. A larger column width results in a smaller gap width and vice versa, as the chart width is not altered when column widths are changed. The gap width is displayed as a percentage of the column width, i.
Changing the column width for one column will change it for all other columns as well. All columns always have the same width. For a chart with variable column widths depending on your data, see Mekko chart. To make individual gaps wider, see Category gap.
The clustered chart is a variant of the stacked column chart, with the segments arranged side-by-side. A clustered chart can be combined with a line chart by selecting a segment of a series and choosing Line from the chart type control of this series. If you want to arrange stacks of segments side by side, you can create a stacked clustered chart. If there is an even number of stacks in a cluster, the label cannot be centered to the whole cluster. Use a PowerPoint text box as a label in this case.
For details about filling in the datasheet refer to Absolute and relative values. The line chart uses lines to connect data points belonging to the same series.