RightEdge - The Ultimate Backtesting and Trading System Development Platform

Getting Started

Welcome to RightEdge, the next level of trading system development and execution.  This article aims to get data and a system developed in as little as fifteen minutes.

This quick start guide is broken into the following sections.  Select the topics below to get relevant information quickly.

 

Configuring services for the first time.
Main screen navigation.
Using charts and indicators.
Creating a system for the first time.
Executing a system and analyzing the results.

 

Configuring Services

A service is a type of plugin that supports retrieving realtime data, retrieving historical data, or connecting to a broker.  Services are associated with symbols in the Watchlist pane.

ConfigureServices

For a detailed walk through of configuring services, visit the Configuring Services section.

Once services are configured, the next step is to create a symbol list.  Right click on the Watchlist window (shown above) to create a folder.  Select New Folder and assign the folder any name.  Right click on the newly created folder and click configure folder.  This is the area to enter symbols, select the historical data provider, real time data provider and broker.

For details on the Watchlist pane, see the Watchlist section.

Main Screen Navigation

The main screen in RightEdge is designed to display as much information as possible without getting in the way of doing work.  Since you know the best way that you work, the panes within RightEdge are dockable, floatable, detachable and pinnable.

 

mainscreen

Each sub window contains a label, or a small title bar.  This title gives a one or two word description of this tool window's functionality.  Each tool window is described briefly below.

 

Indicators

This window houses the technical indicators.  The indicators are broken off into indicator categories.  Indicators can be dragged from the list and dropped onto a chart.  A complete list of built in indicators can be viewed here.  Indicator properties are displayed in Properties window when a chart object is selected.  Indicators can be changed using the Properties window.  Changes made to the indicator are reflected immediately on the opened chart.  For more information on the indicator pane, see the Indicator Pane help topic.

 

Chart Objects

This window contains a list of chart objects that can be dragged and dropped onto a chart window.  The chart objects are broken off into logical groups.  Click and hold the mouse button the desired chart object and move the mouse cursor to the chart window and release to plot the chart object.  Chart object properties are displayed in Properties window when a chart object is selected.  Chart objects can be changed on the fly.  For more information on the chart objects pane, see the Chart Objects Pane help topic.

 

Watchlist

This contains a grouping of symbols.  Create a folder by right clicking on the top level folder and selecting New Folder... This will create a folder that can be named and configured.  Right click on the newly created folder and select Configure Folder... to set the symbols and data retrieval settings for this folder.  The General tab contains the frequency of the data and the actual symbols contained within this folder.  The Services tab contains the associated services set with this folder.  If a service is configured for real time or historical data, select it in this tab.  Different services can be selected for different folders.

 

Create folders to group these symbols into a way that makes sense when running various systems.  For example, you might want to group the Nasdaq 100 into a folder of its own, but also, there might be a folder for the Biotech or semiconductors, which would be a sub set of the Nasdaq 100.  Now these symbols can be listed any number of times in any number of folders all pulling from the same symbol list.  For more information on the Watchlist pane, see the Watchlist Pane help topic.

 

Live Data

When live data is started, symbol items that are configured and selected for live data will be displayed in this area.  Right click on the columns in this window to customize the appearance.  For more information on the Live Data pane, see the Live Data Pane help topic.

 

Live System

This area contains several tabs that pertain to live systems.  This area is updated when a live system is running against live data.  Items such as open positions, open orders, P/L, etc are updated while the live system is in progress.  For more information on the Live System pane, see the Live System Pane help topic.

 

Components

Components are items used to assemble drag and drop trading systems.  For more information on the System Components pane, see the System Components Pane help topic.

 

Document Manager

This area in the center of the main window contains all of the work related items.  Things such as the charts, bar data editor, code editor and trade system results will appear in this work space.  Each new work item will create a new tab.  As shown above, there is a chart in the foreground with a code window behind the chart.  For more information on the document manager, see the Using the RightEdge Environment help topic.

 

Build Output

This window contains output related to the system build.  If there are syntax errors during the compilation, they will be displayed in this window.  If not currently working with a system, it would be a good idea to close, or auto-hide this window.  For more information on the Build Output pane, see the Build Output Pane help topic.

 

Trading System

This window contains the system project.  All items associated with this project including source files and references are listed in this tree.  Use this tool window to change project settings, perform source file and reference management.  For more information on the Trading System pane, see the Trading System Pane help topic.

 

Output Pane

The output pane displays information generated by the system.  Often times this is user defined output but may also be used by RightEdge when a special condition that is not an exception needs to be reported.  For more information on the Output pane, see the Output Pane help topic.

 

Properties

The properties window will contain items relevant to the currently selected item.  Most of the time properties will be tied to the project files.

 

Using Charts and Indicators

To display a chart without executing a system, double click any symbol with data in the Symbols list.  The chart window will be opened in the document manager as a new tab.  A horizontal scroll bar appears at the bottom of the chart.  Use this to navigate through the historical data.  There is a toolbar that allows for a quick change to the number of bars displayed per page.

Now that a chart is displayed, use the Indicators window to begin dragging and dropping indicators onto the chart window.  Each indicator has a different interface depending on the input parameters required.  Once the OK button is clicked, the parameters are set and the indicator values are plotted on the chart.

To remove plotted indicators from the chart, move the mouse cursor over any indicator value on the chart and right click.  A context menu is displayed and the option named Remove Indicator is enabled when the mouse is over an indicator.  Select this item to remove the indicator values from the chart.

A Word About Chart Persistence

Building a chart to personal taste with the proper indicators and parameters provided to those indicators is a bit of a tedious task.  Typically, a technical analyst likes a few indicators on the chart to start.  For this, RightEdge offers a way to persist or save charts as they are on the screen.  Understandably, it is not important to store the data, but rather the indicators and their parameters.

Once a chart is built to taste, right click on the chart and select the Save Chart Settings... item.  Give the chart setting a name and click OK.  From this point, the chart settings will be available for retrieval on the master symbol list.  Reapply the saved setting to any symbol by right clicking on a symbol in the master symbol list and selecting the Quick Chart (With Chart Settings) item.  The saved chart setting will be recalled so that it may be selected.  Select the saved name and the chart will appear with the saved settings.

 

Creating A System for the First Time

System building is the cornerstone feature of the RightEdge platform.  Fortunately, starting the system building process is simple and intuitive.

Select File followed by New and then Trading System.  Select the preferred language (C# or Visual Basic), name the project and click OK.  The Trading System tool window is populated with a new project and a trading system source file.

 

Note: The language is not of consequence if this is purely a drag and drop trading system.

 

Once you have created a trading system project, please refer to the Developing Trading Systems in RightEdge topic which provides in depth coverage of creating trading systems using C# and Visual Basic).

 

Executing a System and Analyzing the Results

A functional system, albeit a simple one, has now been built.  This system will take trades if the conditions are met and exit at a profit target of 5% or a time out of 50 bars, which ever comes first.

To execute this system, select the symbol or symbols to run the system against by clicking the checkbox next to each symbol or symbol group.  From the Build menu, select Run Backtest.  If all of the steps were followed above, the result of the build in the Build Results screen should be successful.  While the system is executing, a progress dialog is displayed.  This will allow cancellation of a simulation run.

Upon completion, a new document is created in the document manager.  This document will contain multiple tabs that break the system results down in various detail.

The Summary tab contains a quick summary of all trades taken either long or short across all of the symbols selected for this run.  It takes the starting capital, computes all trades taken and determines the ending capital.  It will display win/loss percentages for long, short and all trades as well as a simulated buy & hold.

The Trade List tab breaks each individual trade down.  Each trade that could've been taken assuming the conditions were met and the capital was available are displayed.  The trade list shows the symbol for which the trade was taken, the date of the trade, number of shares, position type and P/L.  The far right hand columns keeps a cumulative P/L figure.

The Symbol Results tab is a very quick and simple way to view the trades taken by each individual symbol.  This tab simply aggregates the trade data at the symbol level.  For example, if our system traded MSFT four times throughout the course of the simulation, MSFT would be displayed one time with four trades and the corresponding number of winners and losers.  It will also calculate total profit and profit per active bar.  The winning percentage provides a quick way to determine which symbol or symbols do particularly well and which do not.  This may be helpful on days when multiple signals are generated.  While past performance does not guarantee future results, it may provide some bias towards symbols that have done particularly well in the past.

For more information on the system results, see the System Results help topic.

See Also

Getting Started With Charts

Analyzing System Results