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Making data make sense

Drill-down panels

An important feature of nearly all DataStep applications is the use of drill-down panels like the one below (note: the data displayed in these illustrations are fictional and bear no resemblance to actual Caltrans data). Using these panels, users with no knowledge of databases can create sophisticated queries of their data.

Why drill-down panels?

Instead of requiring users to be familiar with the techniques of database queries and the structure of the database itself, drill-down panels present the available variables to the user, along with the existing ranges or categories of the data. Each time the user changes one of the criteria, the data displayed are updated, along with the remaining choices. For example, if a user selects district 1, the region list is updated to display only the regions in that district. At the same time, the remaining variables are updated to display, for example, only the routes, road classes, and terrain in that district. Similarly, the minimum and maximum values for data such as average daily traffic (ADT), percent truck traffic, and elevation are updated to reflect the conditions in the selected district.

Creating a drill-down query