We have been developing Gantt chart software for more than 20 years. When working with customers, we often discuss issues like performance, grouping, sorting and filtering, data binding, drag & drop interactions, linking of tasks, printing and other typical Gantt diagram features with them. What is often overlooked is the impact that colors can have for a scheduling application. Colors seem so trivial, that they are only rarely discussed. With this blog post we share five best practices how to use colors to define the semantics of your planning diagram.
You may have noticed our analogy between spices and colors: Spices can play a hidden, a dominant or a complementary role in a meal. Similarly, there are also different functions that colors can take in a Gantt chart. Typically, we started differentiating between (a) the role of colors to determine the look and feel of a Gantt chart, (b) the role of colors to define the semantics and (c) the role of colors to provide intelligence to a Gantt chart. With this blog post, we want to shed some light on (a) by giving you four concrete tips.
When using a Gantt chart in any kind of scheduling application, users typically are not interested in seeing all data. They want to focus only on the relevant data. That means they want to focus on those jobs, production orders or tasks which are crucial and which require corrective actions. Hence, software developers creating Gantt chart applications should look out for Gantt chart software components which provide capabilities to create visual alerts.
Different spices not only have different tastes, but sometimes even more important: they play different roles for the meal. Some of them never get recognized when you eat the meal. However, you would definitively “miss something” if they would not be used. Other sorts of spices are very dominant for the meal and you immediately taste them with the first bite … or even smell them when the meal is served. Also, there are spices which are not that dominant, but still round up the taste experience.
Well, similar like spices can play a hidden, a dominant or a complementary role, there are also different functions that colors can take if you develop a Gantt chart in .NET or C#.