This bugged me for a bit. Hopefully this will help somebody save the half hour it cost me.
I wanted to add a few new attributes calculated from other attributes. I added the attribute under settings -> Attrib and indicator management -> attribute definition. I set up my automatic calculation and saved the attribute. I even went back in to verify everything saved correctly. B)
But when I added the new attribute to my dashboard, I only got a bunch of 'NA's when viewing the dashboard. meh, ok, eventually I realize I forgot to associate it. But once i associated, now they were all blank. awesome.
Long story short, the new attributes don't seem to be calculated until you load the project. Even just selecting 'edit' on a project and going back to the dash board was enough to trigger a recalc of the fields.
Update: Even just viewing the project will calculate the attributes.
Once everything is associated and you get your initial calculation, it seems to be more automatic. If I update my formulas, the updated values show up when I reload the dashboard. ie, I don't have to open the projects again.
on a side note. I would have really preferred some basic attributes to be defined. There must be a common set that most companies would use. I am thinking about optomizer attributes for budget and resource usage, for example. The tools seem pretty powerful but an option to load a basic configuration (or even the config defined in the docs, workflow, I am looking in your direction) would have been a big plus. I will get around to a real wish list someday.