following things about this report example:
At the top of each column is a name for the field contained in that
The size of the print font can be varied. The grids separating the
fields can also be varied or suppressed.
The report is primarily sorted by Category (the first column) from
A to Z. The secondary sort field is the Catgy Type, (the 2nd column)
and is organized in A to Z order under each Category. This sorting
hierarchy continues on through the columns to the right as was specified
in the report definition.
Notice the colored lines on this report. We call these "break
lines" because they signify a break in the value of the field(s)
on which the report is being sorted. They can occur at as many levels
as you have sort fields or not at all. When they do occur, they
display the value of the field(s) in the sort sequence that are
changing on the left side and counts and subtotals as specified
on the right side. We will explain how these are specified below.
Here they are displaying the Category (Yellow), which is the primary
sort field, and, within these, the Category and Type (Pink), which
is the secondary sort field, as the sort fields that are changing.
Located at the bottom of the report is the grand total (green) line,
which contains a count of all items that matched the search criteria
of the report. The count refers to the total number of items that
match the search criteria and that are shown in this report. In
this case, the total number of items is sixteen (16). The count
in the pink lines refers to the number of pieces that match the
search criteria for this report that are of a certain item type
within a certain item category. For example, in the first pink line,
there are four (4) items that are in Car-Freight (category) that
are Box Cars (type).
count in the yellow lines refers to the number of pieces that match
the search criteria that belong to a certain category. In the last
yellow line, there are seven (7) pieces that fall into the "Structure
- Building" category.
The Base Cost and Value amount totals are displayed at the end of
each line in which the category changes (yellow break lines) and
the grand total line (green line).
Fields on Report:
The detail lines of the report (no color) show the fields in each
selected record in the order requested on the report. The report
writer calculates an optimum display of these fields and may, when
necessary, cause fields to be broken into multiple lines in order
Next, look at
specifications for this report by selecting Report ID 2 on the Predefined
Reports page of your collection or any of the demo databases. Right
below the Reports Selection Display Table you will see a block of
information entitled "Specifications For," which contains
the specifications for the report.
The first line
of the section gives the title.
The font size
and grid size are not displayed unless you are in an "add"
or "edit" mode.
The first definition
block under the title specifies the record selection fields defining
which database records the report should include. This example includes
all records with a non-blank purchase date and a blank sales date
(That is, it includes only those items that have been bought but
have been not sold.) This process is similar to "Selecting
a Record" in the View Screens.
The next definition
block tells the report writer how to sort the information that it
retrieves. In this report, we selected "Item Category"
under Sort Fields as the primary sort field and selected "A..Z"
under Order. This instructs the report writer to first sort the
information by Item Category in ascending alphabetical order (from
A to Z). We have also selected five other sort fields to be organized
in ascending alphabetical order. These additional fields (Item Catgy
Type, Item Catgy Sub Type, Item RR Abrev, Item Road Nbr, and Item
Mfg Mod Nbr) are subordinate sort fields, which tell the report
writer to first sort by Item Category and then sort the items in
each category by these additional fields in the order that they
You will also
notice the checked boxes under Count for Item Category and Item
Category Type sort levels. This tells the report writer to count
how many selected records exist of each Item Category and to count
how many selected records exist of each Item Category Type within
each Item Category. These are the counts displayed on "break
lines" which are the colored lines in the above example. There
are two levels of break lines and counts because two of the sort
fields were checked for counting.
In this report
definition, one of the Subtotal boxes has been checked - the one
corresponding to Item Category. Checking the subtotal boxes causes
the report writer to add up the values in the fields designated
under Subtotal Fields and display the totals each time the value
of the sort field changes at or above the checked level. In this
example, we specified the inventory purchase cost (base cost) and
the inventory value as the fields to subtotal by including these
field names in the "Subtotal Fields" block. Basically,
the check marks indicate the sort level breaks where the subtotals
should be displayed and the Subtotal Fields" indicate which
things to subtotal. It only makes sense to specify numeric fields
these counts or subtotals will appear below all items in the corresponding
sort group and on a grand total line.
In this example,
there is a break line created every time the type or category changes
in the sorted report. The count is shown at both levels because
two levels were checked, but the subtotals only occur at one level
because only one level was checked.
The last section,
"Fields on Report", specifies the fields to be displayed
on the detail lines of the report. These fields appear left to right
for each record in the same order they are listed here.
If you want
a report that only counts and totals without showing any detail,
just don't specify any fields here. Report ID 3 of the predefined
reports is an example of such a summary report.
Your Own Custom Reports
One way to define
your own custom reports is to clone a predefined report. At the
top of the Predefined Reports page, you will notice two other buttons
on the top right side of the screen in addition to the Generate