“Drilling” in to the detail with Pentaho

November 30, 2010

“Drilling”…..(with respect to Business Intelligence applications and Information Technology). Where did that word come from? What does it mean? What can it mean? I am sure you have heard the phrase “Drill down to detail” before, but you may have also heard “Drill Up”, “Drill Out”, “Drill Across”, “Drill In” and “Drill Through” and don’t forget “Drill Anywhere”.

In general, it means to simply move from summary level information to underlying detail data, either within its current data set or even outside to another data set. Its main purpose is to allow one to easily view summarized information in the form of a chart, table or some graphical visualization with the added ability to “click” on a value, series or region and “drill in” to the next level of detail or out to some other dimension. “Drilling” allows business users to make informed decisions quickly without having to page through sheets of raw data.

For example, summarized sales revenue for the year 2010 is $200K, but upon drilling down we see that $175K was brought in by 3 out of 4 regions, leaving 1 region with very low numbers. This now exposes a single region as being an outlier or a entity that needs focused attention. The power of Business Intelligence applications at work, turning raw data into actionable information.

The Pentaho BI Suite can provide “Drilling” in a number of ways depending on which module you deploy. We will explore each of these in this article……….read more about it here at the Pentaho Evaluation Sandbox.

http://sandbox.pentaho.com/2010/11/drilling-in-to-the-details-with-pentaho/

Regards,

Michael Tarallo
Director of Sales Engineering
Pentaho


Part 4: Using the Report Design Wizard

September 17, 2010

Ahhhh the Wizard. As defined by Wikipedia (you know, if it is on Wikipedia, it must be true) … “A magician, sorcerer, witch, or person known under one of many terms who practices magic derived from supernatural sources.” Well then, why software developers name the “easy to use” part of the product a “Wizard” I just have no idea. Just call it the “Assistant” or the “Guide me thingamajig” – just don’t call it a Wizard unless it is going to read my mind and magically create my report for me!

I digress….in Part 4 of this series we will cover the use of the Pentaho Report Designer and the integrated Report Design…ahem..[coughs] Wizard. The 10 min video below will show you how easy it is to get started creating and publishing Operational and Enterprise type reports. This video only scratches the surface of what is possible with the Pentaho Report Designer, for a more in-depth look visit the Pentaho Pre-Sales Tools page where there is a Comprehensive Report Designer Tutorial that will demonstrate the other features and functions available in this design tool. Stay tuned to this blog for Part 5 where I magically chase down a Leprechaun and force him to conjure me up some Dashboards. Until then.

Click here to view all the tutorials in this series.

Michael Tarallo
Pre-Sales Director
Pentaho


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