Jul 27 2009

ZEN and the ART of Universe Design Presentation Posted

Categories: Fan / Chasm Trap, Universe Contexts, Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 7:39 am

I did a fun presentation (at least I had fun) at the New York user group a few years back. I found the original download package and have posted it on the presentations page on this site. The download package includes the presentation in Adobe PDF format, several universes, some Microsoft Access database files, some sample reports… basically everything you need to go through the slides and review the examples.

There is a “readme” file that contains notes on how to get everything working. The reports and universes were originally built in version 5, but should be usable in any current version (up through XI 3.1 as I type this). The demonstration reports were all built in Desktop Intelligence.


Jul 25 2009

News Post – July 2009

Categories: 2009 GBN - Dallas, General Dave Rathbun @ 11:12 am

There are so many things going on; I don’t know where to start. Some of the events are more global than others.

  • XI 3.1 SP2 has been released. Dallas Marks has already provided details about the release. Tom Nather also posted that it’s lacking some fix packs.
  • I just finished going through an Xcelsius training class. Expect to see some blog posts on it soon. :)
  • DFW local user group meeting is coming up on Tuesday. I was scheduled to present but they moved the date which left me with a conflict. Now I don’t have a conflict, so I get to go.
    DFW BOUG Logo
  • Voting for the 2009 BOB Member of the Year will open shortly. I have to finish checking the nominations and get the voting page ready to go. BOB members that have been registered for more than 90 days can vote.
  • “Early Bird” registration for the 2009 GBN Annual Conference in Dallas expires on August 21st. You don’t want to miss “Return of the Variables” do you? :)
    2009 GBN Annual Conference Logo

There is more potential news to come, but that’s what I have for now. I am also going to be taking some vacation soon. Don’t worry, I have some blog posts scheduled to come out while I’m gone so you can carry on without me. 8-)


Jul 22 2009

Context Versus Alias Overview

Categories: 2008 GBN - Dallas, Universe Contexts, Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 9:24 am

In an attempt to complete the blog posts related to my GBN Conference presentation from 2008 before the upcoming conference in 2009 kicks off I bring you Context Versus Alias: The Smackdown Cage Match. :lol: People often post on BOB as if contexts and aliases are competing for the same job, and that is certainly not true. Each technique has an appropriate use, and I will cover them (although not in much depth) in this post. I won’t be showing the process for creating contexts or aliases in this post as it would end up being too long.

This post is related to slides 13 through 17 from my 2008 conference presentation. Continue reading “Context Versus Alias Overview”


Jul 14 2009

What does JOIN_BY_SQL do?

Categories: Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 8:05 am

We got a new feature / parameter in Designer a while back called JOIN_BY_SQL. This feature allows a universe designer to turn on an option that changes how multiple SQL statements are processed. This is related to the multi-path SQL generation provided by Business Objects, which frankly I think is one of the most powerful features of the product. What is multi-path SQL? What does JOIN_BY_SQL do to change that? Read on for details. :-)

Continue reading “What does JOIN_BY_SQL do?”


Jul 06 2009

SQL Aggregate Versus Universe Projection

Categories: Universe Design Dave Rathbun @ 9:55 am

Measure objects are – in my opinion – the most critical objects in your universe. Without them you can only make lists. While lists might be good for a grocery store or library, they don’t do much to help someone run their business. Measures give your universe purpose. They also are the source of most of the design challenges like fan or chasm traps.

In this post I’m going to go back to a basic concept and talk about SQL aggregation and universe projection and how they work together. Continue reading “SQL Aggregate Versus Universe Projection”


Jul 01 2009

GBN Conference Preview

Categories: 2009 GBN - Dallas, GBN Dave Rathbun @ 10:21 am

I am going to be delivering two sessions at the 2009 GBN conference this fall. I have one scheduled on Monday and the other is on Wednesday. My first session will be about report variables, and will most likely use the 3.x line of Webi for the demonstration platform. I’ve posted about the history of the “Variables” series of presentations before. :) Since I haven’t done one of those for a while, the title that was submitted was “Return of the Variables.”

Session Code: 902
Title: Return of the Variables
Session Date: Oct 19 2009
Session Time: 1:30PM – 2:30PM
Room: Fleur De Lis A&B

The past few years I have done a few presentations on universe design and I have another one this year too. I just finished a project where we had to deal with recursive (hierarchical) data, and we used quite a few interesting techniques to solve those challenges. I’m going to show various ways to model recursive data and the implications each design has on reports. The subject is a bit more specific than I usually like to use for a conference presentation, but it comes up enough that I decided to submit it anyway. I hope the folks that attend will find it useful.

Session Code: 1012
Title: Universe Models for Recursive Data
Session Date: Oct 21 2009
Session Time: 10:45AM – 11:45AM
Room: Grand Ballroom D

The conference is back in Dallas again this year, which means I don’t get to travel somewhere fun. More information on the conference (including a full schedule) can be found on the conference web site.

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