visually rendering tabular data as a gantt chart


jesse aufiero


I have a table in MS Access with data that i'd like to
programmatically translate into a gantt-chart-like rendering in Visio
2010. I presume I'll have to use Visio VBA to accomplish this but it
would be my first foray into Visio automation so I'm trying to get an
idea of just how much work it might take and any other helpful

My Access table would have the following fields:
Month 1
Month 2
Name 1
Name 2

I'd like to programmatically loop through this table and produce a
gantt-chart-like rendering in Visio 2010. The Visio diagram would
already have month labels along the bottom from left to right like
January Febuary March April (etc)

The VBA code would need to translate a given row from the access table
into a Visio shape, perhaps a simple data-enabled rectangle. This
shape's vertical position should be above the monthly labels and the
shape's width should span across the appropriate months. For example,
if the Month 1 field value is 'January' and the Month 2 field value is
'March' the shape should span from January to March like this:
January Febuary March April

The shape should also be able to act as a container for other pieces
of data from the access table row, such as Name 1, Name 2, Number, and
Comment. These values should be visible on the shape like this:
[Smith, Doe, 111]
January Febuary March April

The VBA code would loop through the access table rows one by one and
create the corresponding shapes, which would stack one on top of
another in the diagram, as with a typical gantt chart:
[Rogers, Smith, 333]
[Johnson, Doe, 222]
[Smith, Doe, 111]
January Febuary March April

If the VBA programming for this were fairly straightforward I would
likely want to do a variety of other things with the data associated
with the shapes, where relationships exist between certain shapes,
such as perform calculations on the various Numbers (Shape 1 Number +
Shape 2 Number - Shape 3 Number, as an example).

This is my first inquiry relating to Visio automation so i invite any
feedback- Should I even try to use Visio for this? How extensive
might the programming be? How steep is the learning curve for
proficiency with the Visio VBA object model (I'm already proficient
with Access VBA, Excel VBA, and VS.NET)? What other options might I

Jesse Aufiero

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