In our earlier post, The Future of Web Intelligence and Lumira Interoperability, we talked about Lumira as a data discovery and exploration tool which allowed users to acquire, cleanse and manipulate non-enterprise data, and to build compelling visualizations using a user-friendly interface. Using non-trusted data sources sounds like a negative, but can often be a useful technique for outside-the-box data discovery and “what-if” visualizations.
When Lumira Server for the BI Platform was released in May 2015 as part of Lumira 1.25, SAP BI customer reaction was quite positive, and Adrian Westmoreland told us:
The early feedback was overwhelming, as many customers wanted to get their hands on Lumira Server to see what it can do, and how they can roll it out.
Lumira Server for the BI Platform brings a new dimension to the Lumira story. On top of being a user-friendly means of creating compelling visualizations from personal data sources, Lumira is now also an integral part of not only a trusted data platform, but also a fully governed content platform, including all the benefits that entails.
What Is a Trusted Data Platform?
Data trust is very high when it has entered the BI domain and is consumed via the semantic layer, which centralizes well understood processes and data governance practices that ensure its completeness and quality. It is these processes and practices make SAP BusinessObjects a trusted data platform, and that provides a single version of the truth, the guarantee that all members of the enterprise are on the same page and making decisions consistent with their shared view of the data.
As Adrian Westmoreland told us, trusted data sources on a trusted data platform confers advantages:
Trusted data discovery is nothing new to the SAP BI platform, but we have now brought it to Lumira. Your Lumira projects now inherit all of the trust inherent in the platform. As we move forward, Lumira takes advantage of all of the core functionality of the BI platform.
Working with non-trusted data is extremely important for outside-the-box analysis and very useful in the search for new opportunities, but it is even more useful if you can combine it with the trusted data discovery of the BI platform. Lumira Server for the BI Platform accomplishes this synthesis of trusted and non-trusted: it allows IT and line of business analysts to work together to combine non-trusted with trusted data discovery.
Using the Trust Inherent in the BI Platform
Lumira Server for the BI Platform is easy to adopt as there are no additional components required to deploy it. It’s a straightforward add-on. As Adrian says:
The architecture is very similar to all of the other pieces on the BI platform. The user interface and workflows will be very familiar to BI users, making it very easy to adopt.
Once adopted, the solution is not only easy to use, but easy to support. Ty Miller notes that the Lumira Server add-on has married the IT focus and the business focus. In most organizations, there are years of IT experience managing the BI platform.
Because the approach to this new add-on is so familiar, IT personnel experienced with the BI platform can implement it in their sleep. They are very comfortable with the technology and its security. For business users, it’s a new self-service experience. We have effectively combined easy-to-use data discovery with trusted, enterprise BI, creating trusted data discovery. I am not aware of any other BI vendor that has been able to do that yet. This really is the first example of what trusted data discovery can look like.
The Lumira add-on enables a closer and better dialog with the IT user community. The business user community now has a tool that IT can support. The IT community, particularly administrators and designers, now have a solution they are comfortable supporting, because they are comfortable and secure with the underlying platform.
The ability to support and manage the add-on is one of the things that makes a data discovery solution a trusted data discovery solution. On the BI platform, Lumira benefits from all of the content security, governance, and management capabilities that are inherent to SAP BusinessObjects. Because of this, Lumira can take advantage of the platform’s Life Cycle Management capabilities, while providing an avenue for the development of user-driven content to complement professionally authored content from solutions such as Design Studio and Web Intelligence. As Ty told us:
We want to create the ability to integrate user-driven BI and professionally authored BI, and one of the ways to do that is through the concept of open document capabilities. Because Lumira is now on the BI platform, we can look at ways to use open document technology to allow professionally authored content and user-authored content to connect with each other and enable moving from one view of the data to another.
The adoption of Lumira Server for the BI Platform is also encouraged by the ease with which you can migrate content from the desktop and Team Server environments to a trusted BI platform by simply republishing the content in the server-based environment.
In an upcoming post, we will look at Lumira Server for the BI Platform and BW Connectivity.