Saturday, March 10, 2012

Input Controls in Business Objects

Topic: Input Controls intro in Web Intelligence reports of Business Objects XIR 3.1 and how you can create Xcelsius like Dashboards with Input Controls!

Video walkthrough: Traditionally until 3.1, we had to ability to add Query Filters and in report Report Filters to see partial or granular data. For example, if users asked for the ability to pick and choose States, individual or multiple, you'd build a state Prompt for them and they would have to Refresh the (WebI) report EVERY TIME to pick new states of their choice and hit RUN. This was very ad-hoc like interactive approach because they wouldn't have to ask for a developer's assistance to dissect the report and see granular information. But, every refresh takes some toll on your DB server. Not all reports run in seconds, many takes minutes; multiply that by hundreds or thousands of users, they waste countless hours, DAILY!

Creating Xcelsius like Dashboards with Input Controls!
That's when Input Controls come in. You no longer need to add a prompt. Simply get rid of the prompt (assuming this is a report with reasonable data; not thousands of pages) and add input control for that prompt dimension. You refresh the report once, and once all the data is available, simply use the input controls to dynamically pick and choose and select as many or few states, years, products, or any other dimensions you'd like to view your data based off of. Let's look at it in action with our video below.