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VDF2TIDY|vdffile|tabfile|savelist|+^}~{[!ECDX:Extra columns

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Converts the Vensim dataset vddffile to a tidy data format file tabfile.  

If tabfile is left off or empty the extension .tab is given to tabfile. savelist is a list of variables that should be extracted from the dataset (See Preparing, Using and Exporting Data for more information).  If savelist is left of or empty then the values for all variables are converted.  


! causes the Time axis to be suppressed from the output.
+appends to rather than overwrites the target.
,(comma) changes the format to .csv
[ causes subscript names to appear in separate column or row (note: this should normally be used)
^        causes time/date values to be expored in Excel date code
}        creates separate sheets for constants, data, game, levels, auxiliary and other (XLSX only)  
~        causes the run name to be output as well
{        causes the units of the variable to be output
E causes numbers to be formatted in European style (period for 000 separator and comma for decimal mark)
Csuppresses export of constants
Dsuppresses export of dynamic variables
Xsuppresses export of exogenous variables (data), which may have a different time axis


If you want to add extra columns, such as the run name, then after the final option use a colon : followed by the text you want to appear in the column. Use an exclamation point ! to include the current run name. Note that the :Extra sequence must be at the very end. To add multiple extra columns use additional colons ( : ), escaped tabs ( \t ) or commas to separate them as in:

MENU>SENS2FILE|!|sens2file default|:!:more extra

This appends the run name, via !, and "more extra" as additional columns.

You do not need to include all potential arguments, or even separators for them. A : at any point will be recognized as the beginning of the Extra information. Everything that follows will be treated as the extra information.


Tidy Data is the relational third normal form, organized such that:


1.  Each variable forms a column.

2.  Each observation forms a row. An observation in Vensim is identified by time and subscript elements (array dimensions).


This is common in statistics and visualization packages, such as R and Tableau.


Normally, there is a third feature:


3.  Each type of observational unit forms a table.


This means that variableA, variableB[city,state] and variableC[city] should each be in separate tables. However, in most models this would require a profusion of separate files.


Instead, Vensim organizes a single file such that subblocks have common subscripts. If you would like to enforce strict separation, we recommend performing separate exports, with savelists to restrict each to a set of variables with common subscript ranges.




Hadley Wickham, "Tidy Data," Journal of Statistical Software, August 2014, Volume 59, Issue 10.