OLAP data analysis provides great insights into your business situation and breaks down numbers you were not even aware of,
from high level to low level segments of your data granularity. Such analysis, insights, and visualizations
are more valuable to your organization if available online using your internet browser. End users within the organization
do not have to install anything on their PC stations, while analyses and reports are easy to share and collaborate on with
Benefits of web based OLAP analysis, HTML5, and asynchronous execution
Why choose web technology as base for OLAP front-end solution? Following evolvement of technologies that are related
to web browsers, these days we see significant improvement in performance, scalability, and visual abilities that are
most certainly going to last. HTML5 standards and implementation in all browsers ensure that product features will
the end user does not have to wait for actions to perform. In a nutshell, OLAP web based front-end software prepares
requests to server side (back-end) component that will construct relevant MDX queries to execute against OLAP database
(Analysis Services) and return only results to front-end component that renders results using HTML5/CSS3 technologies.
User actions result with in-page transformations without old style page postback and result in smooth experience of
asynchronous execution. Not to mention the obvious fact that it requires to set up a back-end component once, while
access to OLAP analysis via internet browser by many users is a clear benefit for complete environment to your
IT engineers and support. Maintenance and upgrades of software to new versions are done from a central spot of you
back-end server, while end users see immediate results.
Just send a link to collaborate on and discuss the same analysis with other users
If you have an OLAP database in your organization and more than one user who likes to connect and do some analysis or
report, you should definitely take a look at 'Kyubit Business Intelligence' an OLAP analysis reporting and dashboard solution.
It is light to download and install on one machine in your environment, but serves great BI features to your whole organization
and as many users as you prefer. It will take you 5 minutes to get it up and running and do your first OLAP analysis.
The software is oriented to the Microsoft technologies based data environment that includes SQL server and Analysis
Services. If another user has permission to view the created analysis, just send him a link to open and collaborate on
Cross-platform and cross-device implementation of OLAP analysis and BI solution
implementation on various platforms. Moreover, today users are accessing data (especially business intelligence data) on
mobile devices and expect to find important KPI values and charts to be instantly opened from any place.
Even though HTML5 standards are not entirely implemented on all devices in the same manner, BI solutions using web
technology are easy to adapt to mobile browser and reuse the features of standard PC web experience. Web technologies
for mobile devices are constantly evolving with great speed, and it is a sure bet that features on mobile devices will
provide greater smoothness and performance improvements over time.
The first thing your users are going to love is the Drag-and-Drop analysis. It is easy and fun to drop preferred dimension
levels, hierarchies, measures, and other OLAP cube structures to a designated area on the analysis view with instant
response and results. There is a category and series axis that could hold multiple dimension levels on each axis,
which combined together perform outstanding analysis capability to drill down and explore every little corner of
your OLAP database. To isolate and slice displayed results there are several ways to select filtering members and
narrow your analysis. Sorting, pivot, drill-through, and many more OLAP analysis features are here a click away.
Analysis in Chart view
Web based OLAP analysis certainly needs to offer the visual part of the OLAP analysis experience. Any time you
analyze data you can switch to Chart View to continue your analysis visually which also offers plenty of OLAP
related visual features. At any time switch from Chart View to Grid View and back. Chart view will display your
data using one of 15 chart types and some useful visual options. Selecting a chart segment brings options to
perform some of the available OLAP actions, such as drill-down or drill-through, setting categories and series
dimensions, sorting, export to PDF, and more
Prepare Reports for end users
Some users do not like to play much with analysis data, but like to see final data results that are comprehensive
and visually attractive. You will prepare a report that consists of a grid with values and a chart in any order
you prefer on a single screen. Grid values could include data bars to visually perceive the impact of data values
in each cell. End users could export data to Excel, PDF, print, or send a report link by email. Even in this view
end users can change filters to slice results with different criteria and narrow analysis to their interests.
Collaborate and discuss an analysis with other users
Having business intelligence solutions and OLAP analysis on the web (intranet or internet) will certainly improve
sharing and collaboration of users on the same BI content. It will soon become a central spot where authorized
users will come daily to check out situations, visualizations, KPIs, and other business intelligence insights.
All users with permissions to view analysis or report could add their comments that are visible to other users.
Even more, if configured, comments can come as email messages, which will encourage discussions and other people
contributing their data related insights to the analysis. On the homepage of Kyubit Business Intelligence
application check for all cumulative comments on all objects you currently have been authorized to view.
Secure Analysis and Authentication
Even analysis could be reached easily over URL - users without defined permissions will not be able to open it.
To share analysis with other users and groups it needs to be shared using any of the created Folders that group BI
content with the same security requirements. Once created, the Folder is used to share analyses, reports, and dashboards
with other people. Users and groups from Active Directory or Local machine could be used to add new object permissions,
or objects could be defined as security insensitive and allow anyone access to the content. Kyubit BI offers several ways
for a user as being authenticated. Windows Integrated authentication is enabled by default, which will automatically log
on current Windows users’ credentials to use in the application. Another popular approach is the Login Form authentication,
which will show a login form for users to enter a username and password with the option to remember input and not to ask
every time. This option is also good when a user needs to frequently login with another username and password. Kerberos
Authentication and Basic Authentication are available as well. They are appropriate in certain environment specifics.
Subscribe and receive analysis by email
Once an analysis/report is created you will probably wish to receive fresh data based on the same analysis structure at
scheduled times by email. For example on Monday before your regular meeting. Subscription could be set up to
send data once, weekly, or monthly at specified times. Email contains embedded chart of your analysis, data, and link to
directly open the same analysis in your browser.
Use analysis on Dashboard
Managers like to see important data on the dashboards showing all kinds of business aspects on the same page with nice green,
red, yellow indicators that quickly raise awareness on metrics, goals, and trends for your environment. While preparing a
dashboard with Kyubit Business Intelligence you can use one of the existing analyses or MDX queries to provide data for
any dashboard tile that would reflect fresh online data on your dashboard. Analysis based tile could be drilled down on
the dashboard itself or the user could select to continue analysis in full analysis view where all analytic options are
Create ad-hoc custom Drill-throughs, Calculated Measures, or Named sets
Some useful features of OLAP cube and analysis are hard to predict in advance while designing OLAP cube structure and BI
requirements for a specific environment. After all, business environments are an ever-changing process and shaping to
adapt to market and law requirements. Some OLAP features related to analysis are not built in OLAP cube design, but can
be added while in production run time with Kyubit BI web based OLAP front-end solution and ad-hoc implementation of
some important OLAP tools. The Drill-through OLAP feature is a great insight tool when it comes to analysis of the lowest
level transactions that are OLAP data and aggregations are built upon. While designing OLAP cube a BI engineer could
prepare Drill-through columns to return at any moment within the analysis. However, there are many choices of columns to
pick from and not all scenarios could be predicted while designing OLAP cube, especially in the early stage of Business
Intelligence project implementation. With web based OLAP front end application like Kyubit BI users can construct Custom
Drill-through actions while in production time and choose columns for Drill-though action at any time, save, reuse, and
share them with other users. The same applies to Calculated Measures, where users can create new measures that are somehow
related to existing (Cube defined) measures, that are created and shared with other users on the production time. Named
sets are the hardest to predict while starting your business intelligence project, require grouping certain members in a
Named set, which is an ever-changing process. Named sets could be based on picking particular dimension members or
constructing an expression that would return members dynamically based on a given condition. Certainly web based OLAP
analysis would provide a better tool for analysts and other end users if implemented to add this features while in
production, without contacting any other BI specialists/engineers to make necessary changes in the OLAP cube design.
Back-end setup (Server component)
Like all web applications, it requires a single server component to be installed on a web server that will serve content
to the browsers per request to end users. As we are doing business intelligence in the Microsoft environment and using MS
technologies, it is logical that we install a web application component (such is Kyubit BI) on Internet Information Services
that will use server side web technologies (ASP.NET) to perform all interactions between browser and SQL Server Analysis
installed on the same or different server as SQL Server Analysis Services. It could also be set up on a single machine
with IIS and SQL Server Analysis Service for testing and evaluation or to full Active Directory environment with domain
users and groups. Web server and back-end component could be used to fine tune required access and make a list of allowed
and denied users to be served with content.
Having your OLAP analysis on a modern web based solution will attract and encourage users to start their own analyses,
but also to share and collaborate on business intelligence content. It could be the moment they realize that data is
near them and start to explore great analytic abilities of the OLAP technology.