IBM Cognos BI includes web-based and Windows-based user interfaces that provide a business intelligence experience that is focused upon the needs of different users. In this blog, you can find essential tools & user interfaces of Cognos 10 which Intellium can use to implement and use BI.
In below figure, you can see different components and how they are fitting in. The top most layer, where you can see Cognos Connection, Administrator, Business Insight and different studios. They all are web-based and end-user needs not to install any client side software if user has latest web browser installed.
Bottom layer is basically data layer where you may have homogenous or heterogeneous database systems. Data may be relational or multi-dimensional.
On top of it, we can see three modeling tools there - Framework Manager, Transformer and Metric Designer. All of them are client based installation.
Following is Welcome Screen. From this interface you can open different interfaces as per your requirement.
- Customizable portal interface to all Cognos 10 content (reports, analyses, queries, agents, metrics, and packages)
- Public Folders are shared and secured by user or group
- My Folders is private
- Launching point for different capabilities based on permissions
- Studios, administrative functions
- Used to set preferences
- Language, run options, home page
- Access and personalize content
- Access and view content, live or saved output versions
- Open the report for editing
- Personalize the view by setting prompt values, output format, language
- Schedule the report to be run in the future or at recurring intervals
- automating tasks
- setting up your environment and configuring your database for multilingual reporting
- installing fonts
- setting up printers
- configuring web browsers
- allowing user access to Series 7 reports from IBM Cognos Connection
- restricting access to IBM Cognos software
- to set the initial configuration of IBM Cognos components after you install them
- to configure IBM Cognos components if you want to change a property value or you add components to your environment
- to start or stop the service for an IBM Cognos component on the local computer
You can run IBM Cognos Configuration in either interactive or silent mode. In interactive mode, you use a graphical user interface to configure the IBM Cognos component. In silent mode, the tool runs in the background and requires no interaction from you as part of an unattended installation.
If you change the value of a property, you must save the configuration and then restart the IBM Cognos service to apply the new settings to your computer.
For distributed installations, ensure that you configured all computers where you installed Content Manager before you change default configuration settings on other IBM Cognos computers.
- change the default user and password for Cognos Content Database
- change a URI
- configure cryptographic settings
- configure IBM Cognos components to use IBM Cognos Application Firewall
- configure temporary file properties
- configure the gateway to use a namespace
- Enable and Disable Services
- configure fonts
- configure font support for Simplified Chinese
- change the default font for reports
- save report output to a file system
- change the notification database
IBM Cognos Business Insight is a Web-based tool that allows you to use IBM Cognos content and external data sources to build sophisticated interactive dashboards that provide insight and facilitate collaborative decision making.
You can view and open favorite dashboards and reports, manipulate the content in the dashboards, and email your dashboards. You can also use comments and activities for collaborative decision making and use social software such as IBM Lotus® Connections for collaborative decision making.
Create dashboards with Business Insight to give business users in your organization an integrated Business Intelligence experience that includes collaborative decision making. A dashboard allows users to quickly complete a wide variety of tasks such as viewing and interacting with reports and collaborating and sharing information.
IBM Business Insight is;
- Interactive, self-service workspace
- Assemble and share dashboards
- Assemble content for a personal or shared dashboard without IT intervention
- Arrange elements in an intuitive, WYSIWYG interface
- Interact with information for greater understanding
- Personalize the look and feel with easy formatting options
- Create calculations
- Select alternate visualizations
- Conduct further analysis in context
- Examine data lineage
- Share and collaborate on key information
- Add comments to clarify and question
- Search for existing content and begin authoring in context
Business Insight Advanced is;
- Web-based, drag-and-drop content authoring interface designed for business users
- Relational or dimensional data
- Multiple data layouts and visualizations
- Styles and formatting
- Format, layout, and distribution
- Incorporate external data
- Content can be run as standalone report or incorporated into Business Insight workspace
- Leveraged as starting point for further enhancement by professional authors as needed
Main features are;
- Web-based professional report authoring environment
- Create new reports or enhance content created by business users
- Provides fine-grain control over layout formatting and presentation for production ready formatting
- Additional capabilities for the professional author
- Extend reports with interactive maps and prompts
- Multiple logical pages for varied content
- Interactive tables of contents
- Create offline Active Reports
- Incorporate statistical analysis
- Any report can be used as a template. You simply create and format a report and then use it as your starting point for all other reports, leaving the original report unchanged. A report intended to be used as a template usually does not contain data so that the report can be used with multiple packages. You can start from numerous pre-defined templates, or blank report as shown below.
Your users can interact with the reports you distribute if you add prompts or enable drill-through access to another report, or both. By answering prompts when a report is run, your users customize the contents of the report to meet their information needs. One authored report can then meet the requirements of many users. By enabling drill-through access to another report, your users can navigate from one report to the next.
- view data
- create reports
- change the appearance of reports
- work with data in a report
IBM Cognos Analysis Studio
With Analysis Studio, users can explore and analyze data from different dimensions of their business. Users can also compare data to spot trends or anomalies in performance. Analysis Studio provides access to dimensional, online analytical processing (OLAP), and dimensionally modeled relational data sources. Analyses created in Analysis Studio can be opened in IBM Cognos Report Studio and used to build professional reports.
Use the interactive drag-and-drop environment in Analysis Studio to explore and analyze data to find answers to business questions.
- find and focus on items that are important to your business
- understand trends and anormalies
- compare data, such as details to summaries, or actual results to budgeted results
- assess performance by focusing on the best or worst results
- establish relative importance using calculations such as growth or rank
- share your findings with others
Like IBM Cognos Series 7 PowerPlay Web, Analysis Studio helps you answer business questions quickly and easily. Analysis Studio supports the same drill up and down behavior and drag-and-drop control as PowerPlay Web, while addressing demands for more effective ways to analyze large amounts of data.
IBM Cognos Event Studio
In Event Studio, you set up agents to monitor your data and perform tasks when business events or exceptional conditions occur in your data. When an event occurs, people are alerted to take action. Agents can publish details to the portal, deliver alerts by email, run and distribute reports based on events, and monitor the status of events. For example, a support call from a key customer or the cancellation of a large order might trigger an event, sending an email to the appropriate people.
Use Event Studio to notify decision-makers in your organization of events as they happen, so that they can make timely and effective decisions. You create agents that monitor your organization’s data to detect occurrences of business events. An event is a situation that can affect the success of your business. An event is identified when specific items in your data achieve significant values. Specify the event condition, or a change in data, that is important to you. When an agent detects an event, it can perform tasks, such as sending an e-mail, adding information to the portal, and running reports.
The IBM Cognos Platform includes a new service to support enhanced event management functionality called the Human Task Service. This service is based upon an open specification called WS-Human Tasks. IBM Cognos BI includes the following types of human tasks that you can see in the task inbox:
- Approval requests
- Ad-hoc tasks
- Notification requests
- IBM Cognos Event Studio (notification requests and approval requests)
- The My Inbox area of IBM Cognos Connection (notification requests and ad-hoc tasks)
- A watch rule set up for a report (notification requests only)
IBM Cognos Framework Manager
IBM Cognos Framework Manager is the IBM Cognos BI modeling tool for creating and managing business related metadata for use in IBM Cognos BI analysis and reporting. Metadata is published for use by reporting tools as a package, providing a single, integrated business view of any number of heterogeneous data sources.
Framework Manager can rapidly create relational and dimensional models (Dimensionally Modeled Relational - DMR) through a guided workflow-driven modeling process, check the execution path of the queries, define filters, and configure data multi-language support and security filters.
- model for predictable results (star schema)
- model for OLAP-style queries (model dimensionally)
- create one or more business views
- add calculations
- create and apply filters
- add prompts
- set row level security
IBM Cognos Transformer
Transformer is a proven and relatively simple tool for modeling dimensional hierarchies and levels for PowerCubes.
Transformer is a data modeling tool designed for use with IBM Cognos 8 version 8.3 and subsequent releases. You use this component to create a model, a business presentation of the information in one or more data sources. After you choose a supported product locale (language), add dimensional metadata, specify the measures (performance indicators), and apply custom views, you can create PowerCubes based on this model. You can deploy these cubes to support OLAP reporting and analysis.
IBM Cognos Map Manager
In a map that contains region layers, you can now create new region layers from existing ones using Map Manager. Each new region within the new layer is made up of one or more complete regions from the existing region layer.
As the report author, you can use this new feature to customize maps when the regions in the supplied maps do not correspond to the way information is managed and reported on. For example, your Sales Territories may not match the States layer. You can create a Sales Region Layer with a region such as Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and so on). As a result, you avoid having to create a new map layer in MapInfo, a task requiring additional knowledge as well as licensing of the original MapInfo data.
It is not, however, possible to use portions of one region to form a new region. For example, you can combine the state regions of Washington, Oregon, and Idaho to form a sales region, but you cannot use portions of any region, such as cities, to form a new region. Use Map Manager to load an existing IBM Cognos map file, define the new region layer, and then save the map with the new layer.
- convert maps from non IBM sources
- assign alternate names for map features
- assign alternate languages for map features