TechEd & BI


Microsoft TechEd Home

Microsoft’s 2012 TechEd Conference was held in Orlando 2 weeks ago (June 11 – 14).  I love all of the content that they (and and other conferences such as the Norwegian Developers Conference) share online afterwards each year.  This is great for those of us unable to go to these conferences.

Right now on Microsoft’s Channel 9 site, all of the sessions from this year’s TechEd conference has been posted.  Better yet, if you sign in on Channel 9’s site, you can take advantage of the ability to “queue” up videos in your own personal favorites list to watch them and re-find them later at your convenience.  And they provide great filter & search abilities as you search for just the videos you are interested in.

Watching “Business Intelligence and Data Visualisation: Microsoft SQL Server 2012” by Jen Stirrup, this question was posed to the attendees


The answer of 38.1% surprised me – I actually expected the number to be much lower – I would have guessed somewhere in the neighborhood of 10-15% based on anecdotal evidence in magazines and blogs.  In fact, searching for some more stats, I found this article from last year that aligns more closely with my guess.


Yep – it all comes down to perception – what people think BI is and what people think BI will deliver that will determine their satisfaction & ongoing support for your BI initiatives. 

So important to manage expectations and not allow people to think that any BI plan is a silver bullet, some type of magic 8-ball answer for any and all questions not currently answerable with the current reporting system, while at the same time, encouraging some excitement and support for what it will be able to do, and building a support system for what it can do and may be able to do in the future.

At our company, we are firm users in the Microsoft stack of products and technology, and that has served us well as we have become a leader in the billing software market for communications companies.  And I have enjoyed the use of solid tools such as SQL Server 2012 and its components such as Analysis Services, and the release of PowerPivot (earlier known as Gemini) is a game changer in my eyes.  So that leads me to one of the more baffling Microsoft choices – requiring Power View to be tied to Sharepoint Enterprise. 

Project Crescent now known as Power View


PowerView (previously known as Crescent) is a powerful data visualization tool that many were hoping would simply be an awesome extension to SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) but instead was rolled out with a dependency on Sharepoint Enterprise making even testing this tool difficult and complex and not worth the effort unless your client base is willing to all adopt Sharepoint Enterprise (ours cannot).

If interested in this issue (and the commentary of), you can check out these posts:

One individual apparently got PowerView to work without the Sharepoint dependency but that post seems to be unavailable now but the original link to it remains here.

However, despite being disappointed, there is much to be done with the available visualizations in Excel to use on my PowerPivot worksheets, and so the work to extract meaningful information from gigabytes of data continues on. 

Stay cool this week – its going to be a scorcher here.



About bradosterloo

.NET Software Developer working for Innovative Systems, LLC in Mitchell, SD
This entry was posted in BI, ContinuedLearning, PowerPivot and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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