Building Your First Viewpoint
Find out how Ardoq Administrators can build and manage new or existing viewpoints with the Viewpoint Editor.
Kristine Marhilevica avatar
Written by Kristine Marhilevica
Updated over a week ago

Ardoq administrators can use the Viewpoint Editor to build new viewpoints and manage existing ones. If Ardoq Discover is enabled in your organization, you can access the Viewpoint Editor via the icon in the navigation menu.

Viewpoints menu in the Discover menu

This will take you to the Viewpoint asset management page, where you can see all current viewpoints. If you have not created any viewpoints yet, this page will be empty.

To create a new viewpoint, click the “Create New” button in the top right of the page.


Before You Create a Viewpoint

The Viewpoint Editor takes you through the steps of building a new viewpoint. However, an Ardoq administrator still needs to understand what they are trying to build so it is essential to understand three key things before building a viewpoint:

  1. Your users’ requirements: You should know what kind of components and relationships your users need to see, as well as any grouping, heat mapping, and annotation requirements.

  2. Your own metamodel: You need a good understanding of your organization's Ardoq metamodel. The best way to do this is to visualize it using the auto-generated metamodel.

  3. An understanding of Viewpoint principles: Our article Understanding Viewpoints covers this in detail.

Now that you understand these critical concepts, you are ready to build your first viewpoint.

How to Build a Viewpoint

Step 1. Describe your Viewpoint for a Wide Audience

Try to give the viewpoint a name that helps users understand what information it includes. Your viewpoint’s name and description should help users determine if this viewpoint is the one they need, focusing on the viewpoint’s contents and not how it should be used.

An Example of Name and Description

Naming a viewpoint: Make sure the name is short and conveys the core nature of the topic.

Writing a description: The description should provide an explanation of what questions the viewpoint helps answer and provide context on when the viewpoints can be used. This description should help users identify the appropriate viewpoint to help them view data in their context.

The user can decide how to use the viewpoint based on their own role/task and their understanding of the contents.

Do note that users and roles may access the viewpoint from different directions - more specifically, they may enter the viewpoint from different starting component types.

For example, a viewpoint that shows “Applications Hosting” is meaningful to an application manager. However, to an infrastructure specialist coming in from the server end, it may be helpful to see in the viewpoint’s description “showing the relationship between applications and the servers they are hosted on.” Having both the words “application” and “server” in the description makes it relevant regardless of the user’s perspective.

Step 2. Select Workspaces to Source Your Data From

All component types within the workspaces chosen will be available to build the triples and steps. As the viewpoint is refined, it is possible to come back and add more workspaces and expand out the steps.

Although viewpoints can cross multiple workspaces, you need to specify them for a couple of reasons:

  • To define which component types and reference types (e.g., "Application," "Server") can be used in the viewpoint

  • To define which components and references can be accessed by the viewpoint

It’s important to understand the difference between the first and second points here. While a viewpoint is specified in terms of component and reference types, only instances of those types from designated workspaces will be accessible via the viewpoint.

For example, if you set up a viewpoint showing application integrations, and you have 3 Application workspaces, but one of them contains external applications you don’t want to include. By restricting the viewpoint only to the first two workspaces, you can hide data you don’t want to be accessed by that viewpoint.

You can also click on the "Preview Metamodel" button to visualize the selected workspaces. This will help you create data rules for your model easier (step 4.)

Step 3. Choose a View Style

Use this section to choose a default visualization style that suits the data that is displayed as part of the viewpoint. Unlike in core Ardoq, in Ardoq Discover the administrator determines the most appropriate style for the viewpoints. This improves the user experience by limiting the number of mistakes the user can do.

Choose a View Style

Choose any other view-dependent rules.

Choose a View Style Direction

Step 4. Create Data Rules for Your Model

The viewpoint model tells Ardoq Discover which component types and reference types to include in the viewpoint. It consists of 2 elements:

  • Triples: This element tells Ardoq exactly which component type / reference type combinations to include in the viewpoint. (Similar to type selection or a filter.)

  • Steps: This element tells Ardoq in which sequence to look for triples. (Similar to degrees of separation from your starting component.)

Taken together, triples and steps describe one or more paths through Ardoq’s graph database.

Triples and Steps

Setting Up Entry Points

Entry point defines the order in which steps are executed. You might want to use this feature to reuse the same viewpoint for different roles.

Understanding multidirectional viewpoints is crucial to start using this feature.

Step 5. Apply Filter Rules to Display a Subset of Data

Sometimes, there is information that shouldn't be exposed in Discover, such as confidential information or archived information. You can limit what can be seen in the viewpoint by applying filters.

ardoq add filter rules

Example 1

As an Application Owner I want to know which servers are supporting the applications that are used to realize a specific Business Capability. However, I don’t want information on applications that are “retired” (as defined in the Lifecycle Phase property of the Application component). This is how to build the viewpoint model in two steps:

Step 1:	Triple:		Business Capability		Is Realized By		ApplicationStep 2:	Triple:		Application		Is Supported By		Server

The next step is to filter out the “retired” applications that clutter the viewpoint.

Press “Add filter” to add a filter condition.

Setting up Filter Rule for a Component

Now the viewpoint will exclude any applications that are retired.

Example 2

In the extension of the previous example, the viewpoint should only display SaaS Applications.

Setting up Filter Rule with

Use match “all” feature in the filters and the data will be narrowed to achieve the desired result. The filter rules also support match “any” which allows us to include data sets if any of the rules is met.

Example 3

Another example is filtering properties across component types.

Let’s say your applications may be hosted on on-premise servers or in the cloud. In this case, you may want to allow for both potential paths through your data. You can do this by including a second triple in a step.

Let’s say any of my applications might be hosted on on-premise servers or in the cloud. In this case, I want to allow for both potential paths through my data. I could do this by including a second triple in a step.

Step:	Triple:		Business Capability		Is Realized By		ApplicationStep:	Triple:		Application		Is Supported By		Server        Triple:		Application		Runs In		Cloud Service

This completes the viewpoint model. In this model you are able to see applications that are not retired and are hosted in AWS. This data selection is achieved by combining filters across component types.

Step 6. Select Which Fields to Display in Sidebar

Over time, components can collect a lot of fields, and you may not want to expose all of them in your viewpoint. There could be several reasons for this:

  • They are not relevant to the information you want to convey for this viewpoint.

  • They’re technical fields (e.g., used to trigger workflows) that have no wider meaning or purpose.

  • They contain sensitive information you don’t want to be widely available.

The Viewpoint Editor gives you the option to select the fields you want to expose in your viewpoint.

Please note that this is done on a viewpoint-by-viewpoint basis. Selecting or not selecting a field in one viewpoint has no effect on whether or not it is exposed in another viewpoint.

Use "Select which fields to show in the sidebar" to determine which fields will be displayed in the details sidebar. You can choose to select all, or clear the selection and then select individual fields from the drop-down.

ardoq select fields

All fields from all component types included in the viewpoint are selectable. Click in the selection window to see a list of available fields or start typing to see a list of fields with only those characters.

The components in this section are placed in the order selected during the steps of building your data rule model.

The “Add all” button automatically pulls in all fields of this component. This can be helpful if you want all these fields to be displayed in the viewpoint’s sidebar or if you just want to check which fields are available for a specific component type.

The “Clear” feature assigned to each placeholder removes all the fields you selected from the placeholder.

The order in which fields will be displayed on the viewpoint page are the same as the order of the fields in the component placeholder. To change the field order of display, use a drag and drop gesture.

Finally, choose if you would like the fields descriptions to be shown. This is highly recommended, because it helps stakeholders understand what the data means.

Step 7. Group Components

You can add grouping to your viewpoint to nest components within a group. This will often improve readability and add helpful context to the viewpoint.

There’s one important point to bear in mind though, which is different from the core application: If you use group by parent, parent all, or referenced component, the selected types must be included in the viewpoint model.

Step 8. Highlight Key Info With Formatting

You can also add formatting and label formatting to your viewpoint.

Adding conditional formatting is a fast way to create viewpoints that highlight key properties of the visualization that you want your users to focus on - for example, strategy, cost, or risk. Conditional formatting can be defined for any property of a component type included in the viewpoint.

ardoq add conditional formatting

The Conditional formatting rules are shown to the user when they open the legend.

ardoq conditional formatting rules

Similarly, label formatting will annotate your components and references with extra information. This can include their type and key properties you’ve defined for them.

Tip: Combine conditional formatting with label formatting to reinforce the key information you want to convey.

ardoq label formatting

Step 9. Reorder Non-Priority Surveys

Set the order of any applicable surveys by the level of their importance for the audience.

To change the priority survey, go to the Survey builder > Discover, and tick of "Set as priority survey".

When Discover users navigate to the viewpoints page and try to submit or update the information, they’ll see the order of surveys you selected.


Let’s say you are creating a viewpoint called “Application Lifecycle by Capability” that shows a list of capabilities and related application contracts along with the applications in a timeline view, indicating the duration of the contract for each application and the expected review date.

When creating viewpoints, try to anticipate the priority of the user's goals, and re-order surveys to show the most relevant first.

Step 10. Saving and Publishing Your Viewpoints

Now is a good time to save your viewpoint if you haven't done so already. Then, after saving, set the viewpoint to “Live” to make your viewpoint visible to users.

Note: “Unpublished” viewpoints are always visible to Ardoq administrators irrespective of Live status.

Managing your Viewpoints

Saved viewpoints are accessible to Ardoq admins from the Viewpoint Asset Management page. There you can see which viewpoints are currently published and unpublished.

From here you can also edit existing viewpoints and, by clicking on the three-dot control, copy them, delete them or set permissions that will dictate which users and groups can see them.

Learn more about Viewpoint Permissions.

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