Cross tables

In the main menu, under overviews, you can find what we call cross tables. Cross tables are tabular (‘Excel-like’) overviews of the requirements in BriefBuilder.

Under ‘overviews’, you find access to cross tables for properties and relations

You can use these overviews to get an overall understanding of the data and to edit these in a more Excel-like way (using e.g.  ‘cell dragging’ and filtering).

There are two types of cross tables in BriefBuilder:

Cross table – properties: this one shows the objects of a particular ‘tree’ (e.g. Spaces & locations) and their standard properties (e.g. thermal comfort).

Cross table – relations: this one shows the relations between the objects of two different trees (e.g. between spaces and spatial elements).

See below for two examples. Below that, you can find a more detailed explanation of what you can do with cross tables

Example: indoor climate table
In building projects, indoor climate experts usually prefer to see their requirements in a tabular way. To create such overviews, do the following:

> Select Cross table – properties
> Select Spaces & locations as tree
> Select the relevant property group (e.g. thermal comfort)
> Click on show

Example: location table
In both infrastructure and building projects, it will be useful to see where technical systems/elements are placed spatially. To create an overview of this, do the following:

> Select Cross table – relations
> Select Spaces & locations as tree
> Select Systems & elements as the second tree (or vice versa)
> Click on show

Example: interface diagram
The technical engineers in a project are often interested in what is called an interface matrix that shows the interrelations between different technical systems and elements. To create such a matrix, do the following:
> Select Cross table – relations
> Select Systems & elements for both trees
> Click on show

Selection window

The first thing you get to see when clicking on the cross table menu item is a number of selection possibilities, which you can use to define and limit what you want to see.

Select a trees (or tree part)

The selection window gives you the possibility to choose what kinds of tree(s) (= decomposition/list of objects) you want to see in your table.

You can use the Select tree part button to limit your selection to a specific object or group of objects.

Select what you want to see: which tree(part), which properties, which labels

Please note that some tables may be quite heavy on data, which increases the table’s loading time. In that case consider (pre)selecting only a part of particular tree.

Selecting a property group (property table only)

In the cross table for properties, you can select what property group (e.g. thermal comfort and acoustic comfort) you want to see.

If you want to see all standard properties, don’t select anything or click on the little x icon to remove an existing filter.

Tip: as a default, properties are presented on table’s x-axis. If you prefer to have them on the y-axis, then click on the show button that says Swap rows and columns.

Filtering on object labels

If you are using object labels in your model, you can filter on these to further limit your selection.

This filter can be useful when you want to manage specifications for a particular type of object. Say that you are using a label called “office space” to classify all the office spaces in your project. In that case, when you filter on that label, you can use the cross table to easily edit all the requirements (either properties or relations) for those office spaces (by using the cell dragging or copy-paste feature). 

When you have made your selections, you have to click on show to get to the table itself.

Editing in the table

The table shows the selected trees or properties on an x- and y-axis. The cells shows whether there is a relation or a property value. You will notice that these cells can have different colors. The ‘colour coding’ is as such:

  • Grey: cells where a relation or property value is not possible/not allowed
  • White: cells that are empty, but where you can enter a relation or a property value
  • Blue: cells where there is a relation or a property value
In the grey cells, there is no value allowed/possible. Good example: the GFA/UFA factor (column on the right) can in BriefBuilder only be defined at the level of a building. So, the cells are grey for all objects that are not buildings.

Tip for quick navigation in the table: when clicking on ENTER, you move to the cell below. When clicking on TAB, you move to the cell on the right.

Cells can be edited in the following ways:

  • Typing in a value (quantity/distance in case of relations)
  • Deleting a value (quantity/distance in case of relations)
  • Double clicking on a cell (relation table only: it gives a relation, without yet a quantity/distance)
  • Clicking on your delete button when standing in a cell

Copying data to multiple cells

It can be that you want copy particular requirements (properties/relations) to multiple cells. You may, for example, want to apply the same indoor climate requirements to all the spaces in your selection.

You can do that in two ways:

(1) You can “drag” the value of a cell:

  • Select the cell (or multiple cells)
  • Move your cursor to the little blue corner (lower corner on the right side)
  • Click on that and hold on to your mouse button
  • Drag the value to the cells where you want to have the same value
Click on little blue rectangle in the lower right corner, and hold on to your mouse button, to ‘drag’ a value over other fields

(2) you can use the well-known CTRL-C / CTRL-V short cut.

  • Select the cell (or multiple cells)
  • Click on your CTRL button and the letter C (simultaneously)
  • Select the cell (or multiple cells) where you want to have the same value
  •  Click on your CTRL button and the letter V (simultaneously)

Tip:  you can also use the CTRL-C and CTRL-V shortcuts when you want to copy-paste data from an Excel sheet into BriefBuilder.

Download as Excel

You can download the table in Excel format by clicking on the small icon, right next to the table’s name. If you click on that icon, you will get an Excel download of that particular overview.

Depending on the size of the overview, it may take some time to download the file. You can find the file in the download folder of your computer.

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