My last post was about some of the lessons learnt when trying to push Data Visualizer to its limits, but this one has some ways of overcoming these limitations. The main lesson learnt is that DV binds the shapes within the DV container shape, CFF Data Visualizer, and controls some of the ShapeSheet cells that are normally available for customization. The label of the connector is bound to the respective column in the Excel table, and that, combined with the ability to modify the Dynamic connector master shape provides a way of overcoming some of the limitations discovered.
So, given that we want to use DV, and we need to have multiple flows between the same shapes, then they cannot be separate connectors. We need to combine multiple flows onto the same connector, and then find a way to selectively display different flows somehow by controlling the visibility of the connectors. However, we cannot make them invisible because they will be deleted by DV, so we need to control their transparency instead. We can do this by interpreting the label somehow, and we are going to modify the Dynamic connector to react to the text of the label, and we can also change the colour and line pattern too.
The following screenshots show the Excel table with the multiple flows between the same shapes concatenated with pipe characters, and the diagram created by Data Visualizer when this table is imported into a custom template using Data \ Create from Data \ Create:[Read more…] about Pushing Data Visualizer in Visio beyond its limits