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This is the second part of my blog series about data connections provided by Xcelsius 2008. The first part about XML Data is available Explaining Data Connections of Xcelsius 2008 - Part 1: XML Data.

Most content is from my latest book about Xcelsius co-written with Evan Delodder published by SAP Press which is also available on Amazon. The name of the addedparameter is always „FlashVars“ and its value is a key-value pair. The format is variable_name=variable_value.If there are multiple variables, they’ll be concatenated by & signs, suchas


In ourexample, there’s only one parameter named COUNTRIES, and its value is anencoded XML string, as we have chosen XML as the Variable Format.

The other thing to add is the FlashVars attribute in the EMBED tag. The value of it should be thesame as that of the VALUE attribute mentioned before. These two changes must bemade simultaneously in order to make the Flash variable work on all browsers.

You may also notice that the texts havebeen URL encoded,which is an encoding scheme to avoid non-ASCII characters in URLs. For thestring inside Flash variables, URL encoding is required, so special characterslike <, >

, &, =, and space, etc, will be escaped to something like %3C and+ %20+.

Now whenyou open this HTML document in your web browser, the SWF movie is loaded andthe values are assigned to the COUNTRIES Flash variable, the rangecorresponding to which will be updated. You can modify the values of the Flashvariable in the HTML document to change what you want to see on the dashboard andmoreover, more practically, you may automatically generate the HTML documentvia a web application.