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Well it’s no secret that I like calc groups. But it’s also true that calc groups have an achiles heel. Calc Item names are constant, so for charts, legends stay the same no matter what. Depending on your use case you might get away with it, but sometimes you might get an end user that will not buy it — and he or she might be an important person, so it’s always good to have a Plan B. Field Parameters have brought fresh air, and indeed are great for such use cases because it’s not like you modify the DAX of the measure in the chart, you actually change the measure, so the name shown in the legend also changes, which is great. However, what happens if you want to create a chart where the user can pick from 4 KPI’s and say 8 time intel calculations?? First you’ll have to create the measures, then the field parameter, then figure out how to model that for the user to be able to select measure and calculation intependently… I mean it’s not impossible, but looks long and boring. Let’s see what we can do about it!

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Hi, today I want to talk about inactive relationships. Those relationships with the dashed line that unless you invoque them with USERELATIONSHIP they do nothing. The thing is a common pattern if you read this blog — let’s say you have a retail model, and for some charts you need to use the order date and in other charts the delivery date. Other than that measures are the same, such as Sales amount,  total cost, margin etc. Well, you could do a copy of each of the measures and wrap it in a CALCULATE( … USERELATIONSHIP(… ) ) or do a calculation group.  Today we’ll do that, with style.

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So today I recevied a question on the SML group which looked like the perfect use case for a calculation group. Somebody was trying to build a matrix and wanted to have the values without decimals but the totals with decimals. In other words the goal was defining different formats for values and totals. Without calculation groups, the only way you can get close to that is by using the function FORMAT, but that’s a dirty trick that will come back and get you because now your values are text. If you later use that measure in a SUMX expression for instance, it will not recognize it’s a number anymore. Of course you could keep a measure for the value and a different measure for the formatted value, but hmmm then you would have to do that for all measures that you might want to use this way and well, you would have to manage this sprawling number of measures.  Let’s check both ways in case someone has external tools blocked or something.

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