5 Simple things I always forget about SSRS – Custom Color Palette

There are spells where I am inside SSRS daily and then there are some stretches of time where I wrapped up doing other things and don’t see SSRS for months on end. I always seem “surprised” when I forget some of SSRS’s behaviors. I am sure sometimes I am just pushing the bad out of my head and other times it might be that I just don’t use it often enough to keep that info close to the top of my stack. So I decided that I should start a small blog series as a gentle reminder to myself and maybe along the way it will help someone else.

Custom Color Palette

I was working on some custom SCSM reports for a client–I was subcontracting from a consulting firm–there was a lack of requirements, especially in the design. I was adding charts and of course the color palettes available are almost hideous. That is when I remembered that I could go create a custom palette of colors to use. I fire up Adobe PhotoShop, import a screen shot of the client’s website and use the color picker to identify a set of colors that I want to use. I know that a lot of companies have a defined logo/color palette but since that wasn’t available this was the next best thing. The best part is this is a simple task but it has a huge impact

After adding a chart to your report find Chart section the Properties Window. Select the ellipsis after CustomPaletteColors. (image below)

custompalette_1

You’ll get a popup window ChartColor Collection Editor. The left window allows you to mange the order the colors will be used; the right window is how you identify the colors. Select Add to place additional colors. When you pick the the drop down arrow for the color, you are presented options: a set of available colors, More colors and Expression. (image below)

custompalette_2

After selecting More Colors you are given another popup window, Select Color. From here, you have the option to choose which color selector you are going to use, including a standard color list (default).  Since I had the colors defined, entering the RGB numbers is the best option. You must click add and define each color you want used in your chart. (image below)

custompalette_3

Now that you have defined a custom color palette you must tell the chart to use it. In the Properties window, under Chart find Palette, from the chooser select Custom. You can see that the chart is automatically updated with the new colors. (image below)

custompalette_4

After you have defined colors for a custom palette they become available for use in other places. In the image below there is a horizontal line; below it are the 2 custom colors that were set up in the above example. This is the fill properties on a text box.  This however doesn’t work the other direction, for example if you add a color from the fill properties it doesn’t become available in the CustomPaletteColors. It is available in other choosers like: text box fill, text color and background fill.  (image below)

CustomPalette_5

Other random musings. If you delete the chart the custom palette disappears with it. If you know you are going to create multiple reports with charts needing the same custom color palette you could create a blank report with a chart, define the custom palette and save it as a template. You don’t have to set up data sets or sources, just select cancel when that comes up.

Nashville’s BI User Group – 1st Meeting

WOW!

So that is about the only word I can use to sum up how I feel about last night’s meeting.

We had about 45 of #BIHappyHour in the hotel lobby, it was a little cramped but we were not moving into the open spaces very well. In the future will will do a better job of herding folks into more open space. It warmed my heart to see so many people chatting and introducing themselves. Our food was delivered, special thanks to my Dad and my husband for going to pick it up! I thought the food was awesome and I didn’t get to eat any of it until . . . → Read More: Nashville’s BI User Group – 1st Meeting

Inside SQLSaturday – PayPal

PayPal

This year PASS changed the way money is handled for a SQLSaturday. In the past, they had a PayPal account and all the money was collected there. You would then request disbursement from them, with a limit of like 3 or something and 30 days after the event they’d allow you to pull out any remaining amount. Now, you must provide your own PayPal Account. But what does that mean to you? These details are things that happened to me and may not be a concern for you, if you’ve mastered PayPal.

Verify your account This was a newly-created PayPal account and we were unaware that you must verify . . . → Read More: Inside SQLSaturday – PayPal

Nashville’s newest Pass Chapter

FINALLY NashBI!

If you have known me for very long you know that Kerry and I have been talking about starting a Business Intelligence user group here in Nashville for about a year. At first we were just going to do some additional meetings under the SQL user group’s umbrella. We thought that working as a lager group could be better for both groups. However we finally discovered that BI was huge and there was a lot of interest in it. Just looking at MeetUp there are 3-4 data related groups.

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new PASS chapter here in Nashville. The Nashville Business Intelligence . . . → Read More: Nashville’s newest Pass Chapter

WIT Summit 2014

Recapping the Women in Technology Luncheon

 

As a member of the PASS Women in Technology virtual Chapter I had been on several planning meetings throughout the past year about the luncheon. I had known for some time that they were hoping to secure Kimberly Bryant [ TWITTER | Linkedin ] as our guest speaker.

If you are unaware Kimberly started the organization Black Girls Code [ TWITTER ]. She “hopes to provide young and pre-teen girls of color opportunities to learn in-demand skills in technology and computer programming at a time when they are naturally thinking about what they want to be when they grow up.”

To be perfectly . . . → Read More: WIT Summit 2014

#WIT

I am live tweeting the #SUMMIT14 #WIT.

twitter.com/tameraclark

Where to find Tammy

During the next week you may find it hard to track me down. But I can tell you with a fair amount of certainty that I will be in these places at the times listed below. If you miss me, just shoot me an email or tweet so I can let you know where I will be. I will try to put updates as I know more.

Tuesday:

SQLSaturday Meeting 2p-3:3 Chapter Leader Meeting 3:45p-6 SQL Karaoke 9:30p-?

 

Wednesday:

Regional Mentor Meeting 12-1p

Thursday:

WIT Luncheon 11:45-1:15p OUT OF POCKET 5p-?

Friday:

QA with the Board 1p-2:15 Community Zone 2p-3

Last minute thoughts for Summit 2014

I have written before about Summit and the kind of things to take/pack/do. But I feel that some things have changed and that I am smarter now so I want to revisit this list.

 

Packing

Before a trip we use the dining room table as a place to hold things we want to take and don’t currently need to use. We fondly refer to this as the staging table. I started staging things about a week or so ago. Also make a list of things you don’t want to be without during your trip so you can check it off as it goes in the bag.

If you plan . . . → Read More: Last minute thoughts for Summit 2014

What an honor.

I am so excited and honored to share some exciting news. Last week I got a few burst of good news and I just can’t keep it inside any more. Honestly I just wanted to SING out loud.

I have been officially accepted into the Dun & Bradstreet MVP program. I am so delighted to have this honor and I am looking forward to the great things we can do together!!!

Of course I am not getting an Grammy or anything but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t get 30 seconds to thank a few folks. First OMG a great big thanks to Kim Schmidt [ FACEBOOK | Twitter . . . → Read More: What an honor.

Farewell TechEd

Microsoft announced last week the name of its new all in one conference that would take the place of several other items, one of which is TechEd. There is still one last chance to attend a TechEd, Europe conference but it starts on October 28 and it in Barcelona Spain. MS Ignite will happen May 2015 in Chicago. But honestly that isn’t what I wanted to talk about.

For the last 2 years I have attended TechEd and represented PASS at their booth on the vendor floor. 2013 was spectacular! Our booth saw a lot of traffic. People coming by asking technical questions, learning about SQLSaturday and finding local chapters. . . . → Read More: Farewell TechEd