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Innovations in 4.0: The New Semantic Layer

In an effort to summarize what’s new in 4.0, we’ve decided to publish the top BI 4.0 innovations as a summary table. Post: Innovations in SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0

Today, I will talk about one of our key 4.0 innovations: The semantic layer

Exposing business data under a single umbrella

With its single, common metadata layer, SAP BusinessObjects has long been a pioneer in providing user autonomy by exposing data in plain business terms — no need to know underlying data structures or query languages such as SQL. We continue delivering on the vision of making more relevant information easily accessible by offering a new and significantly enhanced semantic layer.


Semantic Layer

In this release, we deliver

  • A semantic layer that supports all BI clients, across all data types including true multi-dimensional support. Our new semantic layer supports broader reuse of existing hierarchies, key figures and metadata.
  • A semantic layer where universes can connect and draw from multiples data sources. By offering multi-source universe capability, business user will gain fresh new perspectives that were difficult to get before. This will also dramatically lower development time and costs accelerating the ability for organizations to deliver relevant information based on more that one data sources
  • A new information design tool. The information design tool like its predecessor continues providing a consistent user experience to universe designers no matter what the underlying data structures are but, it is significant for a couple of reasons:
  1. The engine behind the information design tool provides a common and consistent user experience to all BI tools. For customers, it means that people building a query in CR, Web Intelligence, Dashboards, Live Office get the same look and feel. We are putting them in a position where they can leverage their skills acquired in one tool to the other tools of our portfolio.
  2. It introduces the notion of teamwork design or if you prefer having multiple persons to work on the same BI project. This is specially important because in an overwhelming number of enterprises (80%+), more than 1 person works on universe design.

Finally, it is important to mention that organizations who have developed dozens, if not hundreds of universes in the past, can continue using them as is. Older universes will continue working just fine without having to be converted or migrated.

Other articles, posts, and links about SAP BusinessObjects 4.0 Innovations:

Innovations in SAP BusinessObjects BI 4.0

Innovations in SAP BusinessObjects 4.0 Presentation

Innovations in 4.0: Unified User Experience

Innovations in 4.0: Personalized, Self-Service Access to Information

Information Design Tool In-Depth Post (external link)

Semantic Layer
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