Campus Days 2013 – My abstract did not make the cut ;(

Unfortunately none of my abstracts for Campus Days 2013 were selected, so i’ll just hang in there and submit some more next year.

The speakers selected this year is quite a bunch, there are some of the best people in the business speaking about almost every aspect of BI and SQL. 2 of my collegues will be speaking of Hekaton in SQL 2014 and how to gain performance in the ETL flow by using HEKATON, that will be interesting to listen in on.

http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Microsoft-Campus-Days/Microsoft-Campus-Days-2013/Optimizing-BI-with-SQL-Server-2014-in-memory-database

It is Jens Vestergaard (Blog|Twitter) and Rasmus Reinholdt Nielsen (LinkedIN|Twitter)

 

Have a look at the tracks, and other information about Campus days in Copenhagen – Click on the logo

Spatial data, where can I download it

Spatial data, where is it?

Today I was working on some reports for a client, where shipments should be visualized on a worldmap. That is an easy task, as the data is already in a functional cube, så I just had to define a few datasets, and I was flying.

Then I had to get some spatial data to visualize the data on a worldmap, and the first few attempts at Google gave me a few options, and I tried a few of them. But some of the shapefiles was skewed in their polygons, so when i clicked on France for instance I got US, and the like.

I googled a little more and refined my search, and ended up on MapGallery of Reporting Services in SQL Server 2008 R2  on Codeplex.com, where I found a fine collection of shapefiles, and *.rdl files with embedded spatial data. 

 

The above map is embedded in a report, and all I had to do was copy the object to my own report. 

And map the country codes from the dataset to the codes in the map.

 

Submitted my abstract for Microsoft Campus Days 2013

 

Just submitted my abstract for Microsoft på Campus Days 2013, it will be a tour in GeoFlow for Excel 2013.

Level 200, basic introduction to GeoFlow and demo of how easy and fast it has become to visualize data in Excel 2013. And now that more government institutions sets their data free, it is even more interesting.

So cross your fingers, and maybe we’ll see each other in CineMaXx Copenhagen ;o)

Have a look at the tracks, and other information about Campus days in Copenhagen – Click on the logo

Business Intelligence – What was the first word?

If we have to look at a Business Intelligence (BI) project from the sideline, one of the most common pits a project may fall into, is NOT to include the Business or the end users.

Some rules that we could work by in a BI project could be these (the list is not complete, and is only a guideline)

  • Let the Business Users define their needs.
  • Constant challenge them, and ask them questions about their perception of their world (data).
  • Define a Business Model, Information model and a Process model.
  • Explorer data in the area of interest.
  • Don’t try to model their entire world (data), regardless that they “need everything”
  • Always, and I cannot emphasize that enough, start with the easy achievable goals.
  • Instead of working by the Waterfall method, use the much more agile method called Scrum

We know it all beforehand vs. let’s get wiser as we go!

In many projects that I have participated as a developer, some tended to scoped them as a normal application development project. Where there have been a massive analysis and requirement work done beforehand, everything looks dandy and the business might have accepted the scope of the BI project.

But what often happens, is that the world is evolving faster than anyone realizes, and the consequences is that what looked as the best possible solution ½-1 a year ago often tends to be somewhat of. Another risk is that the requirement and specifications of the system is hard to change, or if it is possible – the price for doing so might be high and set the project back.

The above method goes by the name Waterfall.

Some companies that have reached a certain maturity concerning their software development – both their applications and their BI systems, have embraced the agile way of software development.

One of the key advantages of this paradigm is that the project is scoped in much smaller pieces. Instead of the massive specification, that often was the result of a project run by the Waterfall method, the project owner and sponsor agrees on a final product based on a few pages of describing text and or some mockups.

When the project is starting, the project is scoped in smaller pieces that the given team of developers, business consultants, testes and IT can manage to finish in af timeframe of 10 to 15 working days. This way it is cheaper to make changes to the specifications as we go, as every sprint as it is called is in self a mini project.

If you would like to read more about this agile method called SCRUM – you should visit this page