BusinessObjects XI 3.0

Business Objects, an SAP company, officially launched BusinessObjects XI 3.0

Today Business Objects, an SAP company, officially launched BusinessObjects XI 3.0, which will ship in late March 2008. Formerly known by its code name of Titan, BusinessObjects XI 3.0 represents a major revamp from one end of the product portfolio (Enterprise Information Management, or EIM) to the other (Information Discovery and Delivery, or IDD).

In addition, the Business Objects unveiled a slightly tweaked mission statement, as part of the alignment with its new owner, SAP.

Transforming the way the world works by connecting people, information, and business

Business Objects XI 3.0 promises improvements in the migration process, in addition to product enhancements. According to Business Objects, one third of their customers have migrated, one third are in the process of migrating, and a third are still waiting to migrate to the XI platform. Some of the features in XI 3.0 were added specifically to address concerns of its largest customers, who have delayed migration until XI 3.0 was ready.

As a consultant, trainer, migration specialist, and conference speaker, 2008 is shaping up to be a challenging, yet fun, year digesting all of the new product features. If your organization has not yet migrated, it’s certainly worth evaluating XI 3.0 after it ships in March 2008.

SAP BusinessObjects Dashboard Resources

Helpful SAP BusinessObjects Dashboard Design and Xcelsius resources.

As a new year’s resolution for 2008, I’m ramping up on SAP BusinessObjects Xcelsius with the goal instructing Xcelsius classes in Q2 of this year. Perhaps that is one of your goals as well, to get moving before Xcelsius 2008 arrives later in the year? In addition to official SAP BusinessObjects curriculum like BU271 Crystal Xcelsius 4.5: Designing Interactive Presentations and PM281 Crystal Xcelsius 4.5: Data Connectivity BOX310 SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards 4.0 Core, I’ve compiled the following list of helpful resources:

UPDATE: New information added for for SAP BusinessObjects Xcelsius 2008 and SAP BusinessObjects Dashboard Design 4.0 (December 2011)

I’ll update this list as a find new and helpful resources. Got one to share? I’d be grateful if you would add it as a comment to this posting…

NOBOUG Winter 2008

FYI, NOBOUG’s February 12, 2008 has been cancelled due to weather!

I’ve accepted an invitation to speak at the February 12, 2008 Northern Ohio Business Objects User Group (NOBOUG) in Cleveland, Ohio. I will present Secure Universes with Restriction Sets, my Insight 2007 presentation. Last February, I presented my Insight 2006 presentation at NOBOUG with massive snowfall. If you’re a Cleveland-area Business Objects or Crystal Reports enthusiast, I hope to see you there!

Here’s the full agenda:

Northern Ohio Business Objects User Group Meeting

When: February 12, 2008

Where:

Amphitheater (Lower Level) — NOTE – Different location!!!
6000 Freedom Square Dr
Independence, Ohio 44131

Lunch: Provided by Business Objects and Quorum Business Solutions

Time………………………Topic

12:00 PM – Networking Lunch
1:00 PM – Business Objects Presentation
2:00 PM – Effective Data Presentation, Stephanie Lyon
3:00 PM – Break
3:15 PM – Secure Universes Using Restriction Sets, Dallas Marks
4:15 PM – Crystal Reports 2008, Kristos Zagorianos
4:45 PM – Wrap-up & Door Prize Drawings

SAP AND BUSINESS OBJECTS WEBCAST

TRANSFORMING THE WAY THE WORLD WORKS BY CONNECTING PEOPLE, INFORMATION, AND BUSINESSES

Effective Data Presentation (2007 IUC)
Stephanie Lyon, Lyon Technologies

This session focuses on the finer points of effective ways to present data to an audience. This session encompasses a closer look at specific design principles. Learn how to communicate more successfully and deliver more effective presentations by understanding how details can make a difference in how a message is delivered.

Secure Universes Using Restriction Sets (2007 IUC)
Dallas Marks, Dataspace

Do you need to tailor universe security to specific users or groups within your organization? Attend this session to learn about restriction sets and how they can apply security to selected groups or user accounts for the universe. Hear how applied restrictions can control objects, rows, query types, and connections. See live demonstrations on how to use each type of restriction and the effect they have on user Web Intelligence documents.

Dallas Marks is a Business Objects certified professional and training manager for Dataspace, an Ann Arbor, Mich.-based business intelligence consulting firm. His extensive Business Objects experience spans across manufacturing, retail and education. A knowledgeable speaker, Dallas presented Getting Personal with Publications and Profiles at Business Objects Insight Americas 2006.

Crystal Reports 2008
Kristos Zagorianos, Chateaux Software

Kristos will discuss and demonstrate how Crystal Reports can be used within any size and type of organization as well as demonstrate Crystal Reports 2008


Microsoft SQL Server and INFORMATION_SCHEMA

Looking for Microsoft SQL Server metadata?

Most of my database experience is with Oracle; however, I’m currently helping a client that uses SQL Server 2005. I’m used to obtaining metadata by querying ALL_TABLES and ALL_TAB_COLUMNS (or USER_TABLES/USER_TAB_COLUMNS or DBA_TABLES/DBA_TAB_COLUMNS). How can similar information be obtained from SQL Server using similar techniques to ALL_TABLES/ALL_TAB_COLUMNS in Oracle?

 

Microsoft SQL Server Information SchemaMetadata can be queried in SQL Server using the INFORMATION_SCHEMA. For example, the following query identifies columns in one table that do not exist in another (actually, a view based on the table).

— INFORMATION_SCHEMA query to identify columns missing in database view but present in source table.SELECT source.TABLE_CATALOG, source.TABLE_SCHEMA, source.TABLE_NAME, source.COLUMN_NAME, source.ORDINAL_POSITION, SOURCE.data_type
FROM
INFORMATION_SCHEMA.COLUMNS source
WHERE
source.TABLE_CATALOG =‘FACT’
AND
source.TABLE_SCHEMA =‘dbo’
AND
source.TABLE_NAME =‘FCT_FREIGHT’
AND
NOTEXISTS
(
SELECT
‘X’
FROM
INFORMATION_SCHEMA.COLUMNS missing
WHERE
missing.TABLE_CATALOG =‘FACT’
AND
missing.TABLE_SCHEMA =‘dbo’
AND
missing.TABLE_NAME =‘FCT_FREGHT_EV’
AND
missing.COLUMN_NAME = source.COLUMN_NAME
)
ORDERBY source.ORDINAL_POSITION

This is just one application of using database metadata. Visit MSDN, the Microsoft Developer’s Network, for more information about the INFORMATION_SCHEMA.

Business Objects, an SAP company

And so it begins…

“On January 16, 2008 SAP announced next steps in the successful acquisition of Business Objects, uniting two of the technology industry’s biggest brands with a shared vision to transform the way the world works by connecting people, information and businesses.” Although the acquisition became effective on January 16, today is the first day the Business Objects logo now sports the “an SAP company” tagline.

Customers are invited to join a live online event on February 12, 2008 to learn how SAP and Business Objects will transform the way the world works by connecting people, information, and businesses…

2008 Business Objects Partner Summit

Thoughts from the 2008 BusinessObjects Partner Summit

I’ve arrived at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas, site of the Business Objects Partner Summit 2008. This is the first Partner Summit held in conjunction with the Business Objects Sales Kickoff, so it will be an opportunity to network extensively with the Business Objects sales force.

Today was the first day of the conference. Unfortunately, the juicy product stuff is under NDA. But I attended a great presentation called How To Give Compelling Demos by Peter Cohan. You can order his book, Great Demo!: How To Create And Execute Stunning Software Demonstrations, from Amazon.com.

During one of the general sessions, Bernard Liautaud (Business Objects founder and chief strategy officer) spoke live via satellite phone with Pete Collette, a sales consultant for Business Objects in Australia. Pete is rowing the Atlantic solo – a pretty awesome feat. You can read more at Atlantic Solo Challenge.

Can’t view above slide show?  Try this link instead.

Queries to identify universes and their universe connections

Query Builder connections for troubleshooting universe connections.

The Query Builder can be used to analyze universe connections. I recently used the Query Builder to assist in how many universes (and which ones) were using a specific connection. Using the information, I was able to update and republish universes to use the “preferred” universe connection. Once all universes were updated, the Query Builder clearly showed that the “non preferred” universe connections were no longer in use and could be safely deleted using the Central Management Console (CMC).

First, determine the SI_ID of the connection.

SELECT SI_NAME, SI_ID, SI_DESCRIPTION, SI_CONNUNIVERSE
FROM CI_APPOBJECTS
WHERE SI_KIND=’MetaData.DataConnection’
— AND SI_NAME = ‘DW’

ORDER BY SI_NAME

Then, use the list of IDs in the SI_CONNUNIVERSE collection to build a second query to inquire about the universes that use that connection.

SELECT SI_NAME, SI_SHORTNAME, SI_DESCRIPTION, SI_ID, SI_PARENT_FOLDER, SI_OWNER, SI_CREATION_TIME
FROM CI_APPOBJECTS
WHERE SI_KIND=’Universe’
AND SI_ID IN (692,670,633,634,699)

The Query Builder can also identify unused universe connections. Using the first query above, look for connections where the SI_CONNUNIVERSE has a single attribute of SI_TOTAL with a value of 0. For example, no universes are using the test only connection.

SELECT SI_NAME, SI_ID, SI_DESCRIPTION, SI_CONNUNIVERSE
FROM CI_APPOBJECTS
WHERE SI_KIND=’MetaData.DataConnection’
AND SI_NAME = ‘test only’

ORDER BY SI_NAME

Accordingly, the test only connection can be safely deleted from the Central Management Console (CMC).

Resources

If you’ve found a useful resource regarding the Query Builder, feel free to post a comment to share with others.

Going to 2008 Business Objects Partner Summit

I’m headed to my first BusinessObjects Partner Summit!

Does what happens in Vegas really stay in Vegas? The upcoming Partner Summit 2008 will be my first trip to Sin City.

Join us for Partner Summit 08 where for the first time it will be held in conjunction with our Worldwide Sales Kickoff conference to allow our partners access to our internal sales tools and training.

Looking forward to seeing my friends in the sales, sales consulting, and partner communities. See you at the Bellagio!

Dallas Marks on MySpace?

One would think that a name like “Dallas Marks” would be unique. Maybe even Google-able. Sigh – not so. In addition to being my dad’s name (although we have different middle names), it is also the name of a country western singer in Pennsylvania. You can check out his MySpace page. He’s not me. Just in case you were wondering…