Hi,

In one of our dashboards, the main visual is a stacked area line chart. It shows how many new users sign up, and of what type. It’s great.

A few weeks ago, we tried to think of ways to improve it. We came up with the idea of having it show our past monthly targets. We thought adding those would help show our past performance and how we’ve exceeded or missed monthly goals. Pretty important and seems fairly intuitive, we thought. Plus, I know I’ve seen this in other dashboarding platforms, so I figured it’s got to be doable here.

Something like this:

DISCLAIMER: I just whipped this drawing up in two minutes. The real deal need not be this smooth or anything.

However, I cannot figure out how to add anything remotely close to this.

My first thought was to overlay a reference line. However, with a reference line, either constant or calculated, I can only show a flat line with whatever single target I choose. Not really what we’re after. Again, we want a line or curve showing our historical targets, not a flat line showing a single target.

So then I thought about how our targets are calculated. We base these on a formula, whose sole input is date. I then whipped up a calculated field to produce the targets we want. To make sure I got as granular as possible as our visuals also can change their periods from days to years, I ended up doing daily targets. The formula looks like this:

ifelse(

datediff(parseDate(‘2022-12-31’), now()) > 0,

9357 * 1.00248195045^(datediff(parseDate(‘2022-12-31’), now())),

0

)

Yes, it’s a little wonky and is based on the end of last year and the current date. However, it produces the exact numerical output I want for any date after 12/31/2022, which is what I’m after.

This obviously didn’t work as a reference line. Therefore, I tried the hybrid bar chart and line chart. But no matter what I do, I can’t simply have the output of this calculated field display. The visual always takes the output of the calculated field and does other calculations to it–a sum, average, whatever. It’s trying to do too much! I simply want to display the output I’m directly calculating, and it doesn’t seem I can do that.

So…I’ve exhausted both options I know of and now I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to simply plot a line based on a formula, and it’s driving me bonkers. Just a simple, simple curve with one input. I’m a math guy and this just baffles me. There must be a way, surely.

Ideally the reference line could be a line or curve and I could just give it my exact formula and this would plot. But again, the reference lines can only be flat. Why? Do most people simply want a flat reference line? I get that could work for visuals displaying mostly constant stuff over time. But for a growth chart? I don’t see how a flat line is viable there. A curve is necessary.

Again, I’ve seen other dashboards plot formulas, but I just cannot do the same here. Please tell me what I am missing.

I really am at a loss at this point.