Developers who use Business Objects products are no different. Carl Ganz wrote a book on developing with the BusinessObjects Enterprise (BOE) .NET SDK based on the work he did to develop his own web service toolbox.
Last week I attended an internal presentation on a library or toolbox developed by Matthias Nott, a Service Line Leader on the Business Objects Global Services team. Matthias has been working with the BOE SDKs for more than 5 years and has put together a set of best practices which he calls the BOInterface. It consists of a set off modules which he has created using the BOE Java SDK to make his job of creating new applications, and integrating existing ones with BOE easier.
For many of you the most exciting feature of the BOInterface will be the ability it gives to re-brand, change, integrate or replace InfoView with little to no code changes to the existing InfoView application. Modifications to InfoView can be very difficult for even the best developer and changes can be easily lost when service packs and hotfixes are applied to InfoView.
Using the BOInterface to modify InfoView allows you to make the changes you need without worrying about lossing your changes to BOE updates. Your changes can be easily turned on or off depending on your requirements.
Another nice feature of the BOInterface is that it encapsulates all of the different SDKs into one combined best practice API. One of the most popular documents that I have published on Diamond is my presentation on “Choosing the Right SDK”, the BOInterface takes care of all of those decisions for you. A good example of this is the Viewer module in the BOInterface. Developers who wish to create applications that allow for the viewing of Crystal Reports and Web Intelligence reports need to use a combination of 3 different BOE SDKs. The BOInterface allows you to view all kinds of reports with one method call and allows you to view them in any format whether it is HTML, PDF, CSV or any of the other supported formats.
The BOInterface is definitely worth investigation for anyone about to start application development using the BOE Java SDKs. As I’ve heard Matthias say in German, there is no such thing as free beer, and people who speak German know their beer. The BOInterface is sold and supported as a consulting solution from Business Objects. I wouldn’t let that scare you off as its very reasonably priced starting at as little as $1750 USD for some of the modules. From the awesome functionality I’ve seen it provide you could easily make the money back in man hours on your first project.
View Matthias’s presentation “Changing InfoView with the BOInterface”