The Common Data Model

The eBMS Platform uses a common data model between eForms, formulas and filters.

Number

This represents a 64 bit floating point number (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floating_point). This can be used to represent any numeric value, e.g.:

  • A number of units
  • Distance
  • Temperature
  • Dollar value
  • Percentage failure rate

E.g.

  • 25
  • 0
  • -15
  • 3.1415926
  • $12.50 // dollar sign would be in the number format
  • 12.5% // percentage sign would be in the number format

Boolean

A value indicating either true or false This is commonly used with checkboxes E.g.

  • TRUE
  • FALSE

You can use this to represent other two value data e.g.: yes and no

DateTime

A value representing a single point in time including both date and time components E.g.

  • 8-Oct-2013 12:57 PM

String

A sequence of characters. E.g.

  • Hello
  • banana bread
  • 54 High Street

Can be thought of as a series of boxes, each with its own number starting from 1 “banana bread” can be thought of as: Example string table

Should I use a Number or a String?

Sometimes you might want to make a field that will have numbers recorded in it, but it might be safer to use a String type instead.

  • Strings can contain numbers, but cannot be used for arithmetic
  • Numbers can be formatted in different ways (dollar signs, thousand separators, scientific notation, etc)
  • Numbers can have arithmetic performed on them in Formulas, Tabular Report Aggregates, and so forth.

As a rule of thumb, if you are storing an identifier like a phone number, client ID or building number, it’s better to consider this to be a string type. If you want to use a number in some mathematical sense, then store it as a number.

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