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The Apple of BI (Expert)

by Jacquelyn Howard

June 11, 2010

Last week at the SAPPHIRE NOW meeting in Orlando, SAP NetWeaver BW and SAP BusinessObjects were very hot topics, with session rooms often overflowing. In fact, a number of sessions had to be closed because they were so full.

In addition, all the keynote speakers (Sir Richard Branson, former Vice President Al Gore, General Colin Powell, Bill McDermott, Jim Hagermann Snabe, Vishal Sikka, and Hasso Plattner) touched on the topic of business intelligence, whether it was in the context of strategic IT or as part of the announcement of the availability of SAP Business ByDesign. In fact, Hasso Plattner gave an enthusiastic live demo of SAP BusinessObjects Explorer on an iPad, showing how two colleagues could discuss sales numbers by reviewing and manipulating dashboards on their iPads.

Indeed, I saw many attendees whip out their shiny new iPads to try out the demo available through iTunes. They were also downloading the YouTube video of the demo. &nb sp;Interestingly, it appeared that perhaps 20% or so of the attendees had left their laptops home in favor of Apple’s sleek new gadget.

Personally, I came away with quite a bit of information that I look forward to sharing with you online in the weeks to come. In the meantime, this issue captures the essence of some of the more popular sessions at SAPPHIRE NOW. For example, BI Expert advisor Ingo Hilgefort’s SAP BusinessObjects sessions were packed. You’ll gain important SAP BusinessObjects best practices in his latest BI Expert article “Best Practices for Web Intelligence Combined with SAP NetWeaver BW.” Need some ideas to take your Xcelsius dashboards to the next level? Try Sandesh Darne’s article “A Methodical Approach to Creating an Xcelsius Dashboard.”

I did notice that although many attendees at SAPPHIRE NOW were investigating SAP BusinessObjects applications, a fair number have not implemented SAP BusinessObjects just yet. That’s why this update also includes two helpful articles that focus on SAP NetWeaver BW 7.01: “Use BW Queries to Display Comments on BW Data and “Hidden Tool Provides Query Information on a Single Screen.” You can be assured that future BI Expert updates will include a balance of SAP BusinessObjects and SAP NetWeaver BW articles — in fact, look for a preview of SAP NetWeaver BW 7.3 in a future BI Expert update.

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