This blog covers some of the latest new features and enhancements in SAP BusinessObjects Cloud and SAP Digital Boardroom release 2016.25. Please refer to the release notes for more details.
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Highlights of this release include:
- Embed external web content into your story canvas pages
- More improvements for variance charts, including the ability to create time-based variances
- Manually adjust the position of a chart axis
- Highlight and annotate data points on Line, Bar, and Bubble charts
- Display a hierarchy as a “Flat presentation” in tables
- Geo enrichment with region names (US only)
- Predictive: Machine discovery enhancements
- Value Driver Trees: Automatic calculation dependency detection
- Allocations: Multiple improvements including auto-fill patterns for spreading and assign operations
- Planning: Version-specific conversion rates and improved error messages for missing rates
Core: Data Integration
Acquire larger amounts of data from on-premise data sources
For all on-premise data sources, you can now acquire a maximum of 100 columns and 800,000 rows.
- As always, we recommend that you check the System Requirements and Technical Prerequisites page in the SAP BusinessObjects Cloud Help Guide for the most up to date information on data acquisition maximums for supported data sources.
- Learn how to create connections to remote systems for data acquisition
Core: Data Analysis, Stories, and Tables
In release 2016.25, we’re introducing a few more improvements to make your variance charts even better.
- Create time-based variances
You can now create time-based variances when you have a Time dimension in your chart! This allows you to show the variance to a previous period.
- Variance can be based on a fixed time period regardless of the chart drill level (comparing to Previous Year, Month, or Quarter)
- Or, you can choose to create the variance on a dynamic period based on chart context comparing Current Period with Previous Period, which means that variance will change with the chart drill level (for example, drilling to Month will calculate against Previous Month).
- Learn how to add a variance
- Improved space distribution for classic variance charts
Classic variance chart layouts are now more visually appealing as we have improved the distribution of space for classic variance charts. This update is applied automatically to existing variance charts.
- Turn off numeric variance scaling
By default, numeric variance is scaled to the base chart. You now have the ability to turn off variance scaling with your base chart (for variance displayed as both numeric and percentage).
You can now embed a web page into your story to combine your analytics with additional live, hosted content.
- We recommend embedding web pages only from trusted sources. As a security measure, a warning message is shown when a user attempts to embed an unsupported web page.
- Refer to this page to learn how to embed a web page and how to check for trusted websites. This page also contains details on known limitations for web page embedding in stories and in Digital Boardroom agendas.
Objects on a screen always look better and are easier to read when they’re lined up properly. And that includes axes on charts! When you’re working with multiple charts on a canvas, you can now manually reposition the vertical or horizontal axis on one chart so that it aligns with the axis on another chart. This applies also to axes on variance charts. We didn’t just stop there though; there are a few things we built in to make your life easier:
- When you move an axis line near the position of an axis line of another chart, a dotted line will appear to help you with positioning. If you “drop” your axis line near this dotted line, it will snap automatically to match the exact position of the other axis line.
- Once you’ve manually adjusted an axis line, you have the option to revert back to its default position by clicking the line and then the “reset axis spacing” button that appears.
- A manually adjusted axis line will keep its position ever if you modify or apply a filter to your data.
- Learn more about aligning chart axes on a page
You can now annotate data points in Bar, Line, and Bubble charts by pinning a data point and adding additional measures and/or comments.
- The pinned data point is a Numeric Point chart that you can resize and move around.
- Once you’ve pinned a data point, you can add primary and secondary measures to it, and style the text and values in the Designer panel.
- Learn more about annotating data points
Support for conditional calculations in stories
The Story Calculation Editor now supports the ResultLookup and If conditional calculations which were already available in the Modeler. Also, Ctrl+Space Bar will now bring up a hint list for possible entries in the formula.
- Learn more about the Calculation Editor
- Learn more about the ResultLookup formula and other formulas available in the Modeler
You can now choose to display a hierarchy as a “Flat presentation” in tables. The value can be selected in the Set hierarchy dialog (opened from More > Hierarchy) for a measure or dimension, or from the filter:
More formatting options for visualizations
In the previous release, we added two new formatting options to help you simplify data labels on charts and change the color of axis lines.
In release 2016.25, there are two additional enhancements for formatting your visualizations:
- Improved text formatting selections in the formatting panel dropdown menu.
- Updated show/hide options for the Cluster Bubble, Tree Map, Heat Map, and Box Plot charts.
Core: Location Analytics
Now in addition to latitude and longitude data, you can create a Location dimension from region names (e.g. states) and sub-region level 1 names (e.g. counties).
- For this release, support for this feature is limited to the United States.
- Learn how to create a model with coordinate or area data for geospatial analysis
New version of spatial delivery unit is available
A new version of spatial data delivery unit has been released for live HANA systems. If you are using the Choropleth layer when working with Geo models based on live HANA systems, you must download and import the new version of the delivery unit. You can find it in the Software Download Center within the SAP Support Portal by searching for GEO CONTENT BOBJ Cloud 1.0. Please note you will need to use your Support Portal S-user ID associated with your HANA Spatial software to access it.
Visualize the difference between existing and predicted values in machine discoveries
In SAP BusinessObjects Cloud, you can run a machine discovery to gain insights on how underlying columns influence a given dimension or measure within a dataset in a story. In this release, interactive charts are now provided to help you visualize the difference between the existing and predicted values in a machine discovery.
Refresh and reconfigure your machine discoveries
Once you have successfully run a machine discovery, you now have the ability to refresh, modify, or reconfigure the discovery using the Discovery toolbar buttons. The Refresh button updates the discovery results with the most current data using the current discovery configuration. The Discovery button allows you to reload or hide the Discovery side panel, where you can change the discovery target column, what columns to exclude from the analysis, and filters.
When creating Value Driver Tree nodes, dependencies between data source nodes and calculation nodes are now shown in the Value Driver Tree canvas by dashed lines. These dependencies occur when the input for a data source node overlaps with the output of another node.
- Auto-fill patterns for spreading and assign operations
You can now use auto-fill patterns to fill in values for target cells. For example, when the Even pattern is selected, equal values are entered for each target cell.
- Maintain existing distribution of values with copy and paste
When you copy and paste multiple values to a target area that includes booked and unbooked cells, values are now distributed to the children of the booked cells in a way that maintains their existing proportions. This behavior results in the same values as typing data into the cells individually.
- Use cells of restricted measures as targets for spreading, distribution, and assign operations
It is now possible to use the cells of restricted measures as targets for spreading, distribution, and assign operations. In addition, the Calculations dimension can be selected as the target dimension for assign operations.
- Learn how to spread a value
- Learn more about spreading, distributing, and assigning values
- Learn more about allocations
You can now assign a specific currency conversion rate to a version, using the Rate Version attribute either in the Modeler or in a story. This allows you to calculate, for example, forecasts using rates for two different scenarios.
- Specific currency conversion rates can be reused across versions, as well as applied ad hoc on calculations in tables.
- Learn more about displaying currencies in tables
- Learn more about version management
More detailed feedback for missing conversion rates
Have you ever tried to use a conversion rate that doesn’t exist in the model’s currency conversion table? Now whenever that happens, you will see an improved error message that provides you with more details to help you identify the missing rates. This includes the missing rates’ category and rate type.
- Learn how to add a currency conversion row or column
- Learn more about displaying currencies in tables
- Release notes for SAP BusinessObjects Cloud 2016.25
- Video tutorials
- SAP BusinessObjects Help Resources
- Official roadmap contains more info on future plans, subject to change.