Feb 28 2008

European Insight 2008 Call for Papers is Open

Categories: Conferences Dave Rathbun @ 12:09 pm

There has been quite a bit of speculation as to what will happen with the user conferences that Business Objects has held. The questions have been answered, at least as far as the 2008 version of the European Insight conference is concerned. It will be held at the same time / same venue as the SAPPHIRE conference in Berlin, in May.

The call for speakers is up on the Business Objects web site (see Related Links). But what about the Americas conference? What I can do is speculate, is I don’t have any inside information. I suspect (and frankly I hope) that they will still hold a separate conference for the Americas Insight this year in the fall, as they have been doing for quite some time. I believe that the European Insight conference was combined with SAPPHIRE because it was convenient. The schedule is very close to what has been used for the past two European conferences (2006 – 2007) and extending SAPPHIRE (which is already a huge conference) to include another thousand or so participants was probably easier than trying to book and manage a separate venue.

But the Americas conference is much larger and has been running longer as a separate entity. I really hope that they keep it separate.

Related Links

Feb 18 2008

Return of the Ninja: DFW User Group Meeting

Categories: Conferences Dave Rathbun @ 5:36 pm

I’m going to be recapping one of my “Tales of the Universe Ninja” presentations at the DFW User Group meeting tomorrow (February 19). If you’re in the area and never been to one of the user group meetings, please consider stopping by. Hope to see you there. 8-)

Registration Link

Feb 16 2008

Making the Best Use of Your Time (in a Prompt)

Categories: Rants, Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 11:22 am

One of the most frequent questions that comes out of either the “building reports” or “universe design” areas on BOB has to be: how can I get rid of the time on my date prompts? And it’s not a new question; I bet if I searched I could find the same questions dating all the way back to 1998, which are the oldest posts we have on the board.

The overwhelming complaint generally boils down to, “… but my users don’t like it.” I get that, certainly I do. But to be honest it’s easier to spend an hour or two of your time ;-) convincing the users that it is more cost effective to leave it than to try to change the way the tool works. It’s not worth the time to remove the time when it works perfectly fine if you ignore it.

Normally I am all about trying to figure out a creative solution and do the “outside of the box” thinking. People that know me understand that one of the best ways to motivate me to solve an issue is to say something along the lines of “… and Business Objects said it can’t be done.” Well, then I have to do it. :lol: But not in this case.

Continue reading “Making the Best Use of Your Time (in a Prompt)”

Feb 05 2008

Turn Off Your Freaking Phone…

Categories: Rants Dave Rathbun @ 7:04 pm

As a community service I present the first post in my new “rants” category. I miss being able to rant… I haven’t been able to chew anyone out for trying to export a Business Objects report into Excel for quite a few versions now. :lol: So here goes…

If you have a cell-phone with a nice LOUD ringtone of your favorite musical artist, and the ring tone goes on for almost a minute, and the decibel level is high enough so that you can hear it over the rumble of your Harley, then for the sake of everyone’s sanity TURN OFF YOUR FREAKIN’ PHONE when you’re not at your desk. Or take it with you. Or put it on silent mode.

Or next time when you come back to your desk you might just be phone-less.

There. I feel better. Carry on with your normal activities.

Feb 01 2008

Using Shortcut Joins The Right Way

Categories: Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 10:48 am

Better, Faster, Cheaper?

Shortcut joins seem to be one of the more misunderstood features of Designer. They should not be used to resolve loops; that is not their function. They are supposed to be used to take shortcuts, thus the name. :) They can make your queries faster, certainly, as they allow you to drop tables from the query. But there are limits as to how they can be used.

As a designer I almost always wait to the last step (or nearly so) to add shortcut joins. Here is the most important point about shortcut joins, in my opinion: If a universe isn’t working without them, adding shortcut joins does not fix any problems. In fact, it may only make them worse. I covered shortcut joins in a fairly detailed fashion in my most recent conference presentation. I am working on a series of posts to supplement the presentation slides and those will hopefully be ready soon.