Workbooks are the default way of managing output. They store each output document (e.g., a STATISTICA Spreadsheet or Graph, as well as a Microsoft Word or Excel document) as a tab.
Technically speaking, STATISTICA Workbooks are optimized ActiveX containers that can efficiently handle large numbers of documents. The documents can be organized into hierarchies of folders or document nodes (by default, one is created for each new analysis) using a tree view, in which individual documents, folders, or entire branches of the tree can be flexibly managed.
For example, selections of documents can be extracted (e.g., drag-copied or drag-moved) to the report window or to the application workspace (i.e., the STATISTICA application "background" where they are displayed in stand-alone windows). Entire branches can be placed into other workbooks in a variety of ways in order to build a specific folder organization, etc.
Each workbook contains two panels: an Explorer-style navigation tree on the left and a document viewer on the right. The navigation tree (workbook tree) can be split into various nodes that are used to organize files in logical groupings (e.g., all analysis outputs or all macros created for a project). Tabs at the bottom of the document viewer (workbook viewer) are used to easily navigate the children of the currently selected node. You can easily move the tabs to the top, right, or left of the workbook viewer by right-clicking on one of the tabs and selecting a different location from the shortcut menu. One advantage of the side placement of tabs is that multiple rows (rather than one long row) are provided (as shown below). This makes it easy to select the appropriate tab.
Displaying tabs can also be suppressed to save the space. Unlike many Explorer-style navigation and organization applications that only allow folders to have children, the STATISTICA Workbook allows any item in the tree to have children. For example, you can add a spreadsheet to your workbook, and then add all the graphs produced using the data in the spreadsheet as children to the spreadsheet. A variety of drag-and-drop features and Clipboard procedures are available to aid you in organizing the workbook tree.
The workbook can hold all native STATISTICA documents including spreadsheets, graphs, reports, and macros. It can handle other types of ActiveX documents as well, including Excel spreadsheets, Word documents, and others. If you want to edit these documents, you can do so using the workbook viewer pane. To edit a Microsoft Word document, double-click on the object in the workbook tree. The Word document opens in the viewer, and the workbook menu bar merges with the Microsoft Word menu bar giving you access to all of the editing features you need. Workbooks can also be used to store all output from a particular analysis.
Navigating the Workbook Tree
The workbook tree displays the organization of files and folders in the workbook. The files and folders are displayed in an Explorer-style format. Items with plus signs next to them indicate folders or files that have children associated with them. To expand the tree for a particular folder or file, click the plus sign next to it. The workbook can support an unlimited number of levels, and both individual items from the tree view and entire branches can be flexibly (interactively) managed (e.g., right-click dragging to copy or move between workbooks or reports).
To select a workbook item for review or editing, simply locate the file in the workbook tree and double-click on its associated icon. The document will then open in the workbook viewer pane. Note that you can also navigate through the children of the currently selected node using the navigation tabs available (by default) at the bottom of the workbook viewer. As mentioned previously, you can easily move these navigation tabs to the top, right, or left of the workbook viewer by right-clicking on one of the tabs and selecting a different location from the shortcut menu or selecting the appropriate command from the Workbook - Tab Control submenu. Note that tabs at the top and bottom of the viewer scroll sideways, while multiple rows of tabs are used when tabs are placed to the left or right of the viewer. Items in the tree are identified by the icon next to them. The folder icon represents a folder that can contain a variety of documents and subfolders. The spreadsheet, report, macro, and graph icons represent STATISTICA Spreadsheet, Report, Macro, and Graph documents, respectively.
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All non-STATISTICA documents are represented by their respective document icons. For example, Word documents are represented by the Word icon, and Excel spreadsheet files are represented by the Excel spreadsheet icon.
The workbook tree can be organized and modified using drag-and-drop features as well as Clipboard procedures. More information about Workbook Drag-and-Drop Features and Workbook Clipboard Features can be found in STATISTICA Help. Commands for inserting, extracting, renaming, and removing items from the workbook tree are available from the workbook tree shortcut menu (accessed by right-clicking anywhere in the tree). These commands are also accessible from the Workbook menu.
Spreadsheets (Multimedia Tables)
STATISTICA Spreadsheets are based on StatSoft's proprietary multimedia table technology and are used to manage both input data and the numeric or text (and optionally any other type of) output. The basic form of the spreadsheet is a simple two-dimensional table that can handle a practically unlimited number of cases (rows) and variables (columns), and each cell can contain a virtually unlimited number of characters. Sound, video, graphs, animations, reports with embedded objects, or any ActiveX compatible documents can also be attached.
Because STATISTICA Spreadsheets can also contain macros and any user-defined user interface, these multimedia tables can be used as a framework for custom applications (e.g., with a list box of options or a series of buttons placed in the upper-left corner), self-running presentations, animations, simulations, etc.
Data file layout in spreadsheets. STATISTICA data are organized into cases and variables. If you are unfamiliar with this notation, you can think of cases as the equivalent of records in a database management program (or rows of a spreadsheet), and variables as the equivalent of fields (or columns of a spreadsheet). Each case consists of a set of values of variables, and the first column in the file can (optionally) contain names of cases.
The spreadsheet window comprises several basic components, as seen in this illustration.
Data (and in-cell formatting options). The remainder of the spreadsheet contains data that pertain to the cases and variables and any optional attached or linked objects (multimedia objects, macros, custom user interface).
Text in cells can be of practically unlimited length (in most STATISTICA configurations, it is limited to 1,000 characters to protect against inadvertent pasting of unwanted large amounts of data into one cell). Text in cells can be extensively formatted including different fonts and font attributes.
Reports in STATISTICA offer a more traditional way of handling output (compared to workbooks) as each object (e.g., a STATISTICA Spreadsheet or Graph, or a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet) is displayed sequentially in a word processor style document.
However, the technology behind this simple report offers you rich functionality. For example, like the workbook, each STATISTICA Report is also an ActiveX container where each of its objects (not only STATISTICA Spreadsheets and Graphs, but also any other ActiveX-compatible documents, e.g., Microsoft Word documents, Excel files and graphics files) is active, customizable, and in-place editable. Reports are stored in the STR file format, which is a StatSoft extension of the Microsoft RTF (Rich Text Format, *.rtf) format. STR files share the RTF formatting information, and additionally they include the tree view information (which cannot be stored in the standard RTF files). Hence, report files are by default saved with the file name extension *.str, but they can also be saved as standard RTF files (in which case the tree information will not be preserved).
The obvious advantages of this way of handling output (more traditional than the workbook) are the ability to insert notes and comments "in between" the objects as well as its support for the more traditional way of quickly scrolling through and reviewing the output to which some users may be accustomed. (Note that the editor supports variable speed scrolling.)
The obvious drawback, however, of these traditional reports is the inherent flat structure imposed by their word processor style format, though that is what some users of certain applications may favor.
The report tree can be organized and modified using drag-and-drop features as well as Clipboard procedures. Commands for inserting, extracting, renaming, and removing items from the report tree are available from the report tree shortcut menu (accessed by right-clicking anywhere in the tree, as shown in the image above).
Graph documents represent another distinctive type of STATISTICA documents, and they offer rich functionality both in terms of the variety of ways in which graphs can be created in STATISTICA and in the selection of graph customization tools.
Similar to the other STATISTICA documents, graphs are ActiveX containers, which means that they can contain a variety of compatible documents (e.g., Visio drawings, Adobe illustrations, Excel spreadsheets, etc.). STATISTICA Graphs are also ActiveX objects and, therefore, can be linked to or embedded into other compatible documents (e.g., Word Documents) where they can be in-place edited by simply double-clicking on them.
Macros (STATISTICA Visual Basic Programs)
The industry standard STATISTICA Visual Basic language (integrated into STATISTICA) offers another (alternative) user interface to the functionality of STATISTICA, and it offers incomparably more than just a "supplementary application programming language" that can be used to write custom extensions. STATISTICA Visual Basic takes full advantage of the object model architecture of STATISTICA and is used to access programmatically every aspect and virtually every detail of the functionality of STATISTICA. Even the most complex analyses and graphs can be recorded into Visual Basic macros and later be run repeatedly or edited and used as building blocks of other applications. STATISTICA Visual Basic adds an arsenal of more than 13,000 new functions to the standard comprehensive syntax of Microsoft Visual Basic, thus comprising one of the largest and richest development environments available.
STATISTICA Macros can be saved in several formats, depending on how you intend to use them. You can also copy them to the Clipboard and paste them into other programs as documents.