Separating or combining visual and data elements
When designing a template, one of the key decisions you make is whether to include both visual and data elements in the template or keep them separated. Good design typically dictates that templates contain only visual elements, and that data objects or information objects contain the data. You might decide, however, to create templates that include data, because some users, particularly inexperienced users, prefer to view a report without having to do anything other than select the template.
Templates that contain only visual elements are more versatile. A single template can be used for different reports that present different data. The user can mix and match data objects or information objects with templates. From a development and administrative perspective, separating presentation from data can be efficient and optimal, because template design and data retrieval can be accomplished by developers with design expertise and data-retrieval expertise, respectively. This strategy, however, requires that the template designer and the data architect coordinate to ensure that the templates and data are suitable for use together.

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