Format Rules for Screen Capture Input

Screen capture input to SAP Business Graphics must adhere to certain format rules in order to be recognized correctly.

SAP Business Graphics assumes that your screen data resembles the basic SAP table structure. This structure is somewhat flexible, but the table must obey the format rules listed in this section.

Restrictions on the Format of the Data

If you use the screen capture facility to input graphics data, the input table can contain either a single list of values, or rows and columns. If the data is a single list, you can include the values themselves and labels for each value. If the data has rows and columns, you can include a label for each row, a label for each column, and the table values themselves.

You cannot use the screen capture facility to input data in multiple tables. If you want to graph data occurring in multiple tables, you must write the input values to a file using ABAP programming tools. See SAP Graphics: Programming Interfaces for more information.

Format Rules for Numerical Values

Numerical values must obey the following rules:

  • Within a numerical value, the screen capture recognizes only the minus sign (hyphen), the comma, and the decimal point (period) as legitimate punctuation. Exponential notation and other variations are not recognized.

Note that the functions of the period and the comma in the English system are exactly opposite to their functions in some European systems. If your numbers are not being interpreted correctly, check with the system administrator to determine how these characters should be used.

  • The minus sign must occur after the number, with no intervening spaces.
  • All numbers in a row must be separated by spaces.
  • A column of numbers is right-justified and identified by the position of its right-most character. Each number belonging to this column must have its right-most character in the correct position.

If you have values partially or entirely out of alignment with the given right-most character position, they will not be interpreted as belonging to the proper column. In most cases, the screen capture program assumes these are values for an entirely new column.

  • You may leave out values for a given row or column.

Format Rules for Text Strings

You can include labels in the table to name the rows and columns. You can also provide a title for the set of rows, for the set of columns, and for the graph as a whole.

  • SAP Business Graphics does not accept more than 32 elements per dimension. As a result, you cannot have more than 32 rows or 32 columns in your table.
  • Any string of characters not identifiable as a number is assumed to be a label. Labels may occur at the beginnings of a row, at the head of a column, as a title for the rows or columns, or as the graph main title. A non-numeric item placed in among the data values is ignored by the graphics program.
  • A legitimate number occurring where a label should be is interpreted as a number. If you want to use labels that look like numbers, you must modify them to contain at least one non-numeric character.
  • Placement of labels for row-names or column-names:
    • Row-names can occur only at the beginning (left side) of a row.
    • Column-names should line up above the columns they are heading, but do not necessarily need to begin in the same column. They should be separated by at least two spaces.

If you don't adhere to these requirements, the screen capture program attempts to pick out the labels anyway. However, the results may not be what you expect. (Check the selection bars in the Selection view to see if your headers were correctly identified.)

  • Placement of titles for rows or columns as a set:

The title for the rows as a set should be placed directly above the column of row-names.

The title for the columns as a set should occur directly above the first of the column-names, and begin in exactly the same position.

  • The main title for the graph should occur in the very first line of the highlighted area. If you have more text there than just the title, the screen capture program attempts to pick out the string in the center of the line. The longest string in the center of the line separated from other text by double spaces is assumed to be the title.
  • The maximum length for a text string cannot be specified exactly since this depends on the size of your window, the resolution of your monitor, and other factors.

Many strings too long for a small window are displayed correctly when you enlarge the window to full-screen size. In general, you must experiment to find the optimal length for text strings.