Better Formula Editor for Anaplan; A new Chrome/Firefox/Edge Extension



  • Hi @GeorgeDuckett,

    I just started using the extension, our business partner mentioned that he has it on Chrome. Although I am using Edge, but was very happy that the extension is available for that as well.

    I am using the NUX, but my business partner is using the old version, because the extension made the formula bar look like the attachment - way more reader-friendly. Anything that I tried I couldn't get Edge to do the same. Also another colleague using Chrome NUX is not seeing the formula like that either.

    Is it possible that this separated view is available in the NUX as well?

    Thanks a lot

  • Hi @HomlodiCinti,


    My extension only adds additional capabilities to the formula editor its self, it doesn't change how it's displayed. I think the new editor (even without my extension) does have the ability to get a view like what you're after, by pressing the icon pictured below. Apologies if I've misunderstood.




  • Awesome; great work on the formula editor, I thought the code completion might be a bit redundant until I also saw it is able to reference line items from other modules, that is very cool!

    Was looking to bring something similar to the A+ for Anaplan addon into the new UX with slightly better font formatting / automatic indentations after IF THEN ELSE.
  • This extension does have formatting, although not automatic (as you're typing). You can right click then choose the  Format option, or use the shortcut Shift-Alt-F. I've not changed font/formatting though, since Anaplan themselves are starting to do a bit of this in that area.

  • Hi George, just wanted to say thanks! This is phenomenal work
  • Thanks, hope it helps!
  • This formula editor is absolutely golden. After playing with it for a week, it massively improved my productivity and formula creation abilities. I still couldn't get the IF THEN ELSE formatting working 100%, but it is actually built into Anaplan as of ~ last month, so that's not even an issue. The code completion is really well done, I love that you added the JSON object's naming conventions as well, as a fellow developer in an anaplan chair it get's me acquainted with naming conventions the API might use. 

    Just some small feedback because I want to give something back to the project, I noticed TRUE and FALSE doesn't come up after a THEN / ELSE as intuitively as it could as an FYI. 

    Thanks again!

  • @Anaplant, Glad you like it! Not quite sure what you're referring to when you say JSON's object naming conventions.

    re. auto-completing TRUE/FALSE, I'm not too sure what you mean there. More generally, I could look to auto-complete true/false if you're within a context that expects a boolean, but after a THEN or ELSE isn't any more specific than the general case of within a boolean line item. Additionally if you had something like IF budget = 0 THEN TRUE ELSE FALSE, that could just be budget = 0. Maybe I've misunderstood?

  • I've added a new feature, QuickFixesWhen errors are encountered the extension will allow the user to choose an appropriate fix from a menu which when chosen would make the required changes to the formula automatically.

  • @GeorgeDuckett 


    Sorry for late reply - my son was born the next day after this post. I think I might have been a bit sleepy, as it wasn't particularly well written on my end! But I think as referring to the objects you grabbed from other modules - as for the second part, I completely forget the example I had in mind :).

    Thanks again though!

  • @Anaplant Ha, absolutely not a problem! Congratulations!

  • Good day George, I see you have an option to donate for Open Source projects.  Is your extension open source and if so may we see the repository URL?

    Kind Regards,

    John A. Booth

  • This is awesome! Been using and promoting it to the rest of our company. One thing that would be really great is if it can detect data type issues when you are passing a parameter to a function such as lookup or sum. You know how Anaplan takes a long time to tell you when you've entered an incorrect data type when calling a lookup or sum function. It would greatly improve productivity if the add-on can provide an advance warning (e.g. like highlight parameter in bright red background) when a model builder has passed the wrong data type as parameter to the function. 

  • I assume you mean stopping you doing a SUM on a boolean etc. Great idea. I do currently check parameters for bracket functions and LOOKUP, but could also make sure SUM and other aggregate functions. If you've found a case I've missed, please let me know.
  • @TristanS I've had a look at what I'm doing in that area, and I already do a few checks. I'm checking the type of aggregate function (SUM/ALL/TEXTLIST) against the entity it's ran against, to ensure the type of entity matches it. I'm also checking the dimensions of the entity and the line item to ensure the formula covers all required mappings (with a LOOKUP/SUM/Other aggregate function as appropriate). If there's some case that is not covered I'd love to hear about it so I can add in an extra check.

  • @GeorgeDuckett hey ... actually you are right. You are doing it already. Wrote that when I was still getting familiar with the tool. So it highlights it in red underscore if you passed the wrong parameter as per example below. Just another thought for improvement. When you start displaying the list of line items to select from (second screenshot), limit the line items to select to be only the valid ones for that aggregate function, in the example below it would be C10, hence the user wouldn't even get see the other line items that would generate an error. But the tool is pretty awesome as it is. Anaplan should probably buy it off you and make it part of their standard IDE. 

    😉 😉 @rob_marshall @JaredDolich @Misbah 





  • @TristanS Thanks for the praise! Yeah, that is on the list. I was thinking of maybe just preferring valid options, rather than completely removing invalid ones. It's probably less confusing to have an invalid one on the list, but if you select it have it highlighted as an error, rather than users wondering why it won't autocomplete with it at all.

  • @GeorgeDuckett Not sure if it's something you're interested in taking on but a number of our users really appreciated the "Improved Colors" from the anaplan A+ extension. Any thoughts on adding that into yours? It would be super helpful! 

  • Hi @trentryan, The A+ for Anaplan chrome extension doesn't appear to be available anymore so I can't check. What feature are you referring to? I assume it does something like code functions differently to line items or text / numbers etc. What about what it does is helpful?


  • The main thing it did that our users found super helpful is add yellow conditional formatting to every editable field. This simply made it much easier for the end user to identify what was a calculated field vs an input. 

  • @GeorgeDuckett 


    Hi George,


    I just found the extension and have started using it. I have some questions.

    - How can I type the whole template of If Then Else using the extension? 

    I start typing "If" and it doesn't show me suggestions and shows red underline. If I select anything from the suggestion it overwrites the written IF. Am I doing something wrong or Is this how it works?

    - It suggests the name of other modules but can it suggest the name of their line items also?



  • Hi @ShubhamCh, thanks for your interest in the extension.


    • It won't auto complete IF..THEN...ELSE in one go, but you should be able to just type out the keywords as needed. It's suggesting other completions depending on the context (i.e. in place of an IF...THEN..ELSE you could have a function name, or line item etc.). If you select those it'll auto-complete with that since selecting that tells it that's what you wanted to type. I'd be interested in your thoughts on this though; whether I could do something more intuitive. (Maybe have IF turn up as an auto-complete, even though it's only 2 letters?)
    • Yes. Since line items in other modules need to be qualified by the module they're in it suggests those other modules, then once you press the dot/period in the middle it will suggest the line items within that referenced module. An alternative would be to suggest all line items (qualified with the module as needed) straight away, but I found that to be a bit confusing / cluttered for large models.
  • Hi @trentryan, If I understand you correctly, you mean colouring/highlighting the cells that either display or allow input of values. Have I got that right? If so, my extension is scoped to enhancing the formula editor its self, so I don't have plans to incorporate your suggestion (if I've understood it correctly).

    Alternatively, do you mean colouring a referenced line item in a formula differently for one that is user input vs a calculated line item? e.g. in a formula "Price * Discount" if price was calculated and discount was user input, then they'd be coloured differently.

  • Hi @GeorgeDuckett ,

    • For IF... THEN... ELSE... statement, I'd prefer the extension to suggest me the whole syntax and I can move to the next part of the syntax after pressing some key, preferably Tab. For example:- I start typing IF, the extension suggests me the syntax. I select the syntax, it comes up in the editor like IF /cursor/ THEN .... ELSE ... . Now when I am done writing the condition for the statement. I should be able to press tab and the cursor move after "THEN" and likewise with ELSE statement. I hope you get my point.
    • The extension suggests the name of the module but when I add "." after the name. Sometime it shows the line items of that module and sometimes it doesn't show. Attaching Screenshots.Screenshot 2022-09-21 at 12.23.02 PM.png

    Screenshot 2022-09-21 at 12.23.23 PM.png



  • @ShubhamCh Re the if-else, Ok, understood. I'll add that to the list, although being a bit fiddly to do it might take a while.

    That other issue looks like a bug. I know in some circumstances it won't auto-complete 'new' line items as it doesn't always get an updated list when ones are added. The workaround for this is to refresh the page (I know that's not ideal). Not sure if that's the case in this instance, but it doesn't look like it though.

    Are there any error messages in the google chrome's development console (F12, Console tab)?

  • Hi @GeorgeDuckett 

    I think there are some errors in the console. Attaching the screenshot.

    Screenshot 2022-09-21 at 1.30.07 PM.png

  • @ShubhamCh Thanks, those are actually normal Anaplan ones. I'll see if I can figure out what the issue is.

  • Thanks @GeorgeDuckett for quick reply and for this awesome extension. 

  • @ShubhamCh This issue has been fixed in the latest version of the extension, sorry about that!