Columns - possible?
Posted by John Krische on April 19, 2010 at 11:09pm
A short question this time:
Is it possible to have a report wherein each band only goes across X percentage of the page, so that I can make a page with multiple "complete" columns?
IE, say I have a report where the actual data is small and few, and really only needs to take up 1/3 or 1/2 of the width of the page. In fact, it should be tight since making it too wide will reduce legibility. Thus, it would be nice to print in 2 columns with a divider line or an oversized gutter.
Possible? Future Version? Or maybe do the report as "labels-that-aren't-really-labels"?
Reply by Jan Schenkel on April 21, 2010 at 9:28pm
I have been contemplating columnar reports, but my head sometimes gets stuck when I'm working my way through different scenarios of how this could be implemented in as flexible a way as possible. A few examples:
- should all bands (except page header and footer, and perhaps title and summary) automatically reduce to column width, or should you be able to apply columns from a specific group level downwards?
- which brings us to the territory of column balancing, where you may want the library to move things from the bottom of column 1 to the top of column 2 to print the full-width group footer underneath, and then start the next full-width group header below that, etc. (with additional aspirine needed to figure out 3 or 4-column balancing)
- a similar interesting request is sidebar columns that may span multiple detail bands, but this gets hairy if you want to keep data in the main report and the sidebar in sync (especially with stretching texts)
I'll probably end up implementing the 'naive' approach first, but the creative me thinks further ahead
Labels have a fixed size, so they may not be the right solution for your requirements. I would suggest that you experiment and see if it fits the bill. Columns aren't going to make it in straight away; I have interesting things lined up for version 2.0 that need finished before I risk another headache-inducing walk-through of the ramifications of columnar reports...
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