Sum properties in branches

René W. shared this question 5 months ago
Discussion Open

Is it possible to sum properties in branches in the whole map marked by a tag?

Best Answer
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Hi René,

Don't worry about your English. It's a lot better than my German - and unlike a lot of English speakers who say that, I actually did study German at school!

However, the one thing I do find confusing about your question is that I've never seen the resource field used in this way before - personally I would use tags for this (more on that in a moment). Either way though, the problem is how to show the different totals for each resource (or tag) as different properties at the same time on the central topic.

This is surprisingly tricky to do in MindManager. The simplest option is to show the map as a Gantt chart. If you click on Resource Chart you get a table showing exactly what you want. Alternatively you can use a Smart Filter, but that will show only the total relevant to the filter you apply.

If however you really want to show all the totals on the map itself at the same time you are going to have to use a combination of SmartRules and Formulas. There may be a simpler option but this is the best I can think of (and I suggest you first try this on a dummy map, or a copy of the map, rather than the real thing):

  1. Write the following SmartRule, and call it "Today Rule" (or the equivalent in German - I'll use the English terms throughout this): the trigger is Resources is exactly equal to Today, and the Effect is to write the number 1 in the Today property. Add similar rules for the other resources. These rules will have the effect of creating the relevant topic property for each resource with a "1" in it.
  2. Add the following formula to a topic: [Today Hours]=[Today]*EffortHours and repeat for This week and Next week. This should create three calculated properties, only one of which should have a value equal to the relevant number of hours.
  3. Copy these calculated properties and paste on the other topics.
  4. Go to the central topic and add the following formula: [Total Today Hours]=SUM(Descendants.[Today Hours]) and repeat for This week and next week. The total number of hours for each "Resource" across the map should appear.
  5. The properties created in steps 1 to 3 can be hidden, but I suggest you see if they work properly first.

The result is shown in the map images below.

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Back to my comment about tags. I assume you're using SmartRules to assign the resources based on due date. If so, you could combine the SmartRules you are currently using with those you create in step 1 above. You can also assign tags as well as or instead of resources. This gives you the option of the following, simpler view:

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Replies (1)

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Yes it is. I’m assuming you’re summing the properties on the central topic. If you filter the map based on the relevant tag with the filter set to hide rather than fade non-matching topics, then the sum formula should ignore these in calculating the total.

The one exception is if your formula references a specific topic. If this is the case the properties for that topic will be included in the calculation even if the topic is hidden.

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It is my idea to display the planned and the remaining time permanently

I want to calculate the "Restdauer" (Remaining Efford) property for multible tasks in different periods of time. For today, for this week and for next week. I would like to show the sum in the left branch

To calculate the sum for the property "geplante Stunden" (planned hours) I´m using the EffordHours for the resources @Heute @Aktuelle Woche und @Nächste Woche.

I hope my explanation of the problem is understandable because my English ...

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Es ist meine Idee dauerhaft die geplante und die Restzeit anzeigen zu lassen.

Ich möchte die Summe für die Eigenschaft "Restdauer" für verschiedene Aufgaben und verschiedene Zeiträume berechnen. Heute, Aktuelle Woche und nächste Woche. Die Summe soll im linken Zweig angezeigt werden.

Restdauer ist die Differenz zwischen geplantem Aufwand und erbrachten Aufwand einer Aufgabe

Für die Berechnung der geplanten Stunden nutze ich die Summe des Aufwandes für die Ressourcen @Heute @Aktuelle Woche und @Nächste Woche


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1

Hi René,

Don't worry about your English. It's a lot better than my German - and unlike a lot of English speakers who say that, I actually did study German at school!

However, the one thing I do find confusing about your question is that I've never seen the resource field used in this way before - personally I would use tags for this (more on that in a moment). Either way though, the problem is how to show the different totals for each resource (or tag) as different properties at the same time on the central topic.

This is surprisingly tricky to do in MindManager. The simplest option is to show the map as a Gantt chart. If you click on Resource Chart you get a table showing exactly what you want. Alternatively you can use a Smart Filter, but that will show only the total relevant to the filter you apply.

If however you really want to show all the totals on the map itself at the same time you are going to have to use a combination of SmartRules and Formulas. There may be a simpler option but this is the best I can think of (and I suggest you first try this on a dummy map, or a copy of the map, rather than the real thing):

  1. Write the following SmartRule, and call it "Today Rule" (or the equivalent in German - I'll use the English terms throughout this): the trigger is Resources is exactly equal to Today, and the Effect is to write the number 1 in the Today property. Add similar rules for the other resources. These rules will have the effect of creating the relevant topic property for each resource with a "1" in it.
  2. Add the following formula to a topic: [Today Hours]=[Today]*EffortHours and repeat for This week and Next week. This should create three calculated properties, only one of which should have a value equal to the relevant number of hours.
  3. Copy these calculated properties and paste on the other topics.
  4. Go to the central topic and add the following formula: [Total Today Hours]=SUM(Descendants.[Today Hours]) and repeat for This week and next week. The total number of hours for each "Resource" across the map should appear.
  5. The properties created in steps 1 to 3 can be hidden, but I suggest you see if they work properly first.

The result is shown in the map images below.

bed9e82277fdaa549d388d06bd9ec908

87892a46b2ff7563fdb6b2c3a0801430

Back to my comment about tags. I assume you're using SmartRules to assign the resources based on due date. If so, you could combine the SmartRules you are currently using with those you create in step 1 above. You can also assign tags as well as or instead of resources. This gives you the option of the following, simpler view:

5f11c07b0175ddec3c0e36952e433eb3

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1

Hi Alex,

many thanks for your easter gift. Your suggestion to take a combination of SmartRules and formulas was the solution.

Why I took the resource, because I could sum the effort of every ressource.

I have used the schedule view since 2018 and now I wanted to tune it a little bit.

The first step was the dependence of size on duration. The second step to show the the totals for the three periods.

I almost made it. But there is a little issue. Task imported from Outlook I can´t give new properties formulas or resources.

If I can find a solution for this issue then will be perfect.


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Unfortunately Outlook imposes significant limitations on the task elements that are updated or at least retained when a task is synced between Outlook and MindManager - and in fact some like topic properties, tag groups other than categories and resources are stripped out. I don't think there is a workaround for this.

While using resources as means to categorise total effort by due date period obviously works for you, I'm pretty sure you can do the same thing just with tags. This would leave the resources field available for its intended purpose of nominating specific staff as resources.

By they way, I'm intrigued as to why you specifically add the effort for Today to that for This Week. Isn't this double counting, especially if you don't specifically exclude it from the This Week calculation? I did this with the This Week SmartRule:

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After your post I changed it and now I use only tags. (last post)

You ask about the totals today and this week.

I want to know the total of the week. The total for today is more like gimmick because I can quickly see how many hours I work today ;-)

Working on use cases is a training for me to be fit in MindManager.

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One issue which has been nagging me is that under this approach the This Week tag will show the only the hours, or days, for tasks that are due this week, and not the hours/days for tasks that are due next week but which should be undertaken this week, ie, for those tasks which either start this week or previously.

Actually the tasks that started last week and are due next week are slightly more straightforward in that you can assume that the number of days required for the task in this week are a full week, assuming that task progress has been consistent. With a bit of fudging it should be possible to work out the effort required as well.

The really tricky calculation is for projects that commence this week but which fall due next week. I don't think there is an easy way to apportion the the number of days just for this week. The problem is that "today" could be at any point during the week, if you see what I mean, and I haven't figured out a way to deal with this.

If only MM Formulas and properties recognised and worked with dates in the way Excel does!

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Hi Alex,

I use the schedule view only for my daily tasks. I haven't the problem with the start and end time because the tasks aren't bigger 8 h. I divide a big task in small pieces. For example if I have a multi-day training I plan every day separat. Saying ready after every task is motivation for me (Kanban method )

It's my pleasure to meet you.

Greetings to Lawson

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Hi René,

Likewise - nice to meet you too.

Yes - I can see that breaking your work program into single-day tasks would make this system work without the need to make the calculations excessively complex.

In theory you could have tasks of any duration less than a week, provided they didn't overlap into the following week, but this approach would work best with tasks of a day's duration or less.

Good luck with it!

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Hi guys, thank you for your ideas and your discussion. Great 👍

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