Faculty of Engineering & Design staff

Sharing experience and best practice across the Faculty of Engineering & Design

Tagged: macro

Macro of the Month: Task Report

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month, Uncategorised

Introduction

The Task List function in Confluence is useful in its basic form (as a 'tick box') but if it is used to its full extent (i.e. including a name and a deadline with each task) it can be used to help keep track of tasks and produce personalised reports.

Task Report is a macro that produces an up to date list of tasks (i.e. what is written after a Task List 'tick box') which can be filtered on a range of attributes, enabling you to quickly survey progress on single or multiple projects.

Application(s)

Task Report has the following function:

  • allows you to create a dynamic list of tasks from the spaces/pages of your choice, filtered by whether they are complete or incomplete, who they are assigned to, who created them, etc.

How to add Task Report

Firstly, make sure you have tasks recorded on Confluence, beginning with the Task List 'tick box' followed by the Confluence username of the person assigned the task, a brief description of the task and the deadline for the task, e.g. taskThen...

  • Place you cursor where you want the Task Report macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type task report into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (say, whether you want to list tasks that are complete or incomplete)
  • Click Save

How to use Task Report

Task Report can help users monitor their own tasks across multiple spaces; allow project managers to survey progress across all aspects of a project; support managers monitoring the workload of individuals etc.

Additionally, recording tasks in this way (with the username and deadline) means that an email will go to the user mentioned to inform them that this task has been assigned to them and when it is due.

 

Macro of the Month: Attachments

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

It is a straightforward matter to attach documents to a page on Confluence and then link them individually to items of text. However, in the case of a large number of attachments, many lists of attachments within a space, and/or where attachments are updated on a regular basis, dynamic list of attachments that respond to changes could be of more use and save time in amending text and links.

Attachments is a simple macro that produces an up to date list of the current attachments on a selected page, which can be filtered by file type or attachment label, making it ideal to manage attachments across a space.

Application(s)

Attachments has the following function:

  • allows you to present, on a page of your choice, a dynamic list of attachments to a page of your choice, with files type/labels of your choice

How to add Attachments

  • Place you cursor where you want the Attachments macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type attachments into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (say, the order in which the list appears or the file type of attachment that is included)
  • Click Save

How to use Attachments

Attachments can help users locate the groups of documents they require quickly and easily. It can also help those editing the space ensure version control is maintained.

 

Macro of the Month: Roadmap Planner

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Roadmap Planner is a simple macro within Confluence that creates a map for projects. As well as displaying basic information about a project timeline, it can also be linked to more in-depth information on individual work packages. Roadmap Planner allows you to communicate how a project is progressing and also give viewers the level of detail they require.

Application(s)

Roadmap Planner has the following function:

  • allows you to present details on the progress of a project in the form of a simple Gantt Chart

How to add Roadmap Planner

  • Place you cursor where you want the Roadmap Planner macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type roadmap planner into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you may wish to experiment with the settings)
  • Click Save
  • Type the details of your particular project onto the new chart that appears

How to use Roadmap Planner

Having details of your project can help people who are involved see the progress that is being made and share information with other parties. It can also be use by individuals to enable them to track their own progress and report to managers.

Example

FED Staff wiki

image2016-11-29-14-0-34

 

 

Using Wiki to improve processes

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📥  Engineering & Design staff insight

I first used Wiki when I started in my current role to share papers for a group meeting. I only used very basic features to start with, such as uploading papers and using permissions to give new members access, but I was curious to learn more.

Learning about Wiki

I was initially a bit nervous about creating my own Wiki pages, but support from Tracey Madden, Learning Enhancement Adviser, gave me an overview of Wiki and also introduced me to macros. Macros allow extra functionality to be added to a page and range from including an attachment to inserting content from an Excel spreadsheet, or embedding a twitter feed or video. Every month, Tracey publishes a macro of the month blog post, which is great for finding out about different macros.

Improving processes

In discovering more about Wiki, I began to see potential for using Wiki to improve the efficiently of a number of processes. I have now created Wiki pages to enhance information sharing and to contain extensive resources for staff to access (for example, the documents for the Faculty’s REF paper grading workshops). I also use Wiki to manage informal meetings, contribute to project work and find information on the Faculty’s Staff Wiki space.

Advantages of Wiki

There are many advantages of using Wiki. You can set up and manage permissions to allow individuals or groups access to all, or some, of your pages. Wiki provides a permanent hub of resources that are available at any time. It is also useful for project work, particularly when working with staff throughout the Faculty or University, as pages can be easily accessed and updated by various staff.

Your turn!

If you haven’t already, now is the time to engage with Wiki, especially since the Faculty’s internal staff webpages have now moved to the Staff Wiki space. For Wiki guidance, have a look at the Faculty’s help with Wikis page. If you want a few tips on using macros, watch out for Tracey’s macro of the month blog posts.

Staff Wiki space

The Faculty’s staff Wiki space

 

Macro of the month: Survey and Vote

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Survey and Vote are straightforward to set up and can be used in different ways. They enable the gathering of information, opinions and general feedback from visitors. Survey allows you to ask several questions and offers a list of responses from which to choose, Vote allows only one question; apart from this they operate in the same way.

Application(s)

Survey and Vote have the following function:

  • allows you to present questions to the user to elicit their knowledge, opinions, needs etc

How to add Survey/Vote

  • Place you cursor where you want the Survey or Vote macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type survey or vote into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you may wish to experiment with the settings)
  • Click Save
  • Type your list of questions into the macro box that appears (for Vote the question is within the settings)

How to use Survey/Vote

Having some interactive elements in your space is a good way of getting your visitors to engage and a great way for you to get some feedback on your work.

Survey/Vote can be a good way to find out from your visitors how they find using one particular page or the whole space. You can use Survey/Vote to find out how visitors would like you to develop the space further or what parts of the space they value most. You can also ask questions that determine what they have learnt from a resource or their opinion on some content.

Example

Staff support

Survey(click on image to enlarge)

 

Macro of the Month: Search box

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Search box is another basic macro with one specific use. It enables visitors to find information on the space relating to their choice of search term

Application(s)

Search box has one function:

  • allows you to create a search box for your space into which visitors can type their own search term

How to add Search Box

  • Place you cursor where you want the Search box macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type search box into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you may wish to experiment with the settings)
  • Click Save

How to use Search Box

Bear in mind that different visitors will want to search in different ways. This gives visitors an alternative method of finding what they need, other than browsing through the left hand page tree or using the Index (if there is one). The more complex a space (greater number of pages, greater range of topics) the more useful the search box is to visitors.

Example

Faculty of Engineering and Design staff area

Capture(click on image to enlarge)

 

Macro of the Month: Column

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Column is another basic macro with one specific use. It is useful for breaking up areas of the page to allow you to control the layout.

Application(s)

Column has one function:

  • allows you to subdivide a section of a page

How to add Column

  • Place you cursor where you want the Column macro to appear (must be within a section)
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type column into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you may wish to experiment with the settings)
  • Click Save

How to use Column

Although the Page Layout button allows to you add sections to break up a page, Column allows you much more control over the layout

Example

Faculty of Engineering and Design staff area

Capture(click on image to enlarge)

 

Macro of the month: Children display

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Children display is another basic macro with one specific use. It is particularly useful for spaces with many nested pages ('child pages') which can be hidden from view; this macro enables you to help visitors to find those pages quickly.

Application(s)

Children display has one function:

  • makes a live, dynamic list of pages that are nested under a chosen page (does not have to be the one where the macro is placed)

How to add Children display

  • Place you cursor where you want the Children display to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type children display into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you can, for instance, choose to limit the level of nested pages that are displayed)
  • Click Save

How to use Children display

Look at how a list of the 'child' pages could be added to a page in your space to enable visitors to find the materials they need quickly. The addition of this macro is useful where:

  • you have a large number of pages, many of them nested (so not easily found)
  • you want a list of child pages (e.g. a contents list) to be dynamic to reflect frequent changes in the space

Example

children display

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Macro of the Month: Labels List

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Labels List is a very basic macro with one specific use. It is particularly useful where you have a large space with a lot of content, including multiple different items on a page, as it enables you to create a dynamic A-Z or alphabetised index to help visitors find what they want.

Application(s)

Labels List has one function:

  • makes an alphabetised list of the labels used in a space

How to add Labels List

Firstly...

  • add labels to the pages of your wiki (click on the icon at the right hand side of the foot of the page)
  • type in a label and click Add
  • repeat this process until you have added all the label for the page
  • repeat the process for attachments if you wish

Then simply...

  • Place you cursor where you want the Labels List macro to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type label list into the search box
  • Set the variables up as you wish (you can, for instance, exclude some labels from appearing in the list)
  • Click Save

How to use Labels List

Look at how labels could be added to the attachments in your space and/or the pages themselves to enable visitors to find the materials they need. The addition of labels (and the availability of a labels list) is useful where:

  • you have a large number of pages
  • there are multiple items on a single page (which are not all reflected in the page title)
  • some items in your space can be known by multiple names

Example

Index

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Macro of the Month: Excerpt/Excerpt Include

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📥  Tracey's macro of the month

Introduction

Excerpt Include is a macro which has to be used in combination with the macro Excerpt.

Excerpt is used to define part of a page which you would like to include in additional places. Excerpt Include is used to define where that except will appear

Application(s)

Excerpt Include has one feature:

  • displays the section defined by the Excerpt macro in one or more additional places

How to add Excerpt/Excerpt Include

This is a two-stage process as you have to set up two macros.

A. To add Excerpt

Simply...

  • Place your cursor just above or below the material you want to have appear on another page (as well as this one)
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type excerpt into the search box
  • 'Cut and paste' or 'drag and drop' the material you want to have appear on another page into the Excerpt area.
  • Click Save

B. To add Excerpt Include

Simply...

  • Place your cursor where you want the excerpt to appear
  • Click on Insert (in the tool bar above) then Other Macros from the drop-down menu
  • In the pop-up window, type excerpt include into the search box
  • Indicate the page location of the except you want to use
  • Click Save

How to use Excerpt/Excerpt Include

Consider using this where it would be useful to:

  • have material that appears on more than one page be up-datable in one place
  • have active material (e.g. tasks lists) that appear in more than one place remain in sync

Example

The buttons at the top of the pages on Faculty of Engineering and Design staff area wiki (https://wiki.bath.ac.uk/display/FEDSA/Faculty+of+Engineering+and+Design+staff+area)

Buttons

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