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I have a set of metrics to fill each row of a table. And each metric has some factors, usually, there are about 10-20 factors for one metric and they are ranked by their importance as well. Now I would like to display these ranked factors in a table cell. I am quite confused as to a good way to display them, by indicating their ranks? Just a plain text? A list in a cell with the ability of accordion? or ...

For example:

metric name | factors

Metric A | f1, f2, f3....

Metric B | f2,f3,f4,f1...

Metric C | f2,f4,f6....

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Are the rankings always in series, like 1, 2, 3, ...? And why do the factors have to be in a table cell? –  JOG Apr 8 '13 at 21:15
    
@JOG, this is the requirement from the spec. Besides, the rankings can be any kind, according to their metric. –  Kyleinincubator Apr 8 '13 at 21:50
    
I am not sure I understand the 'importance' rank of the metrics. Is this a quantifiable value that can be sorted? Is there more than one way to sort them? –  Michael Lai Apr 9 '13 at 0:28
    
@MichaelLai, the factor can be a string with some value, which is computed by some algorithm. Then the factors of one metric can be sorted(descending) by their values. –  Kyleinincubator Apr 9 '13 at 0:30
    
Perhaps the question needs a little more details and an example for you to get the answers you look for. –  JOG Apr 9 '13 at 7:57

2 Answers 2

If you do need to keep the factors in a cell, and the ranking is in series, like 1, 2, 3, and so on; then just ordering them is probably one of the best ways to compress information like that. You could additionally put a text somewhere (table header perhaps) "Most important first", if needed.

If the ranking of the factors are of greater importance you might want to provide a way to Open or Zoom in on them. For example, clicking the cell might take you to a new page, or open a window, depending on your platform.

If you do provide a more spacious area for the factors to be displayed, you should use the height by giving each factor a row, and sort the rows.

mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

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Depends on what you are really trying to show, but I assume that you want to highlight how different metrics put emphasis on different factors, so here's one particular approach. Of course, it is probably not suitable if you have a lot of different factors, but if you can provide more details then I am sure the community will be able to give you some ideas.

enter image description here

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Thanks for your reply. Actually, I am wanting to find a way to display the ranked factors for each metric properly. So we can ignore the ranking relations for different metrics. Currently, I am just using a plain text to display them in a cell, such as Factor 1, Factor 2, Factor3.... –  Kyleinincubator Apr 9 '13 at 4:13

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