Positing the Intelligence: Conditional Formatting in the Analysis Services Layer - Page 3

May 14, 2007

Examine Conditional Formatting at Work in the Browser

Let’s set up the browser axes to approximate the proposed report display, so as to verify the intended results of our conditional formatting handiwork.

1.  Click the Reconnect button in the Browser toolbar.

2.  Expand the Sales Reason dimension in the cube metadata tree, and drag the Sales Reason attribute hierarchy to the empty data grid, dropping it in the area marked Drop Row Fields Here.

3.  Expand the Sales Territory dimension in the cube metadata tree, and drag the Sales Territory Group attribute hierarchy into the area marked Drop Column Fields Here.

4.  Expand Measures, and then the Internet Sales Measure Group. Drag the following measures / calculations (preferably in the order shown) to the area of the grid marked Drop Totals or Detail Fields Here:

  • Internet Order Quantity
  • Internet Sales Amount
  • Internet Gross Profit Margin

A partial view of our newly assembled and populated browser grid is depicted in Illustration 4.


Illustration 4: Reconnect: The Browser with our Viewer Settings (Partial View) ...

And so we see that our conditional formatting logic appears effective.

We can leverage cube-based conditional formatting, and enjoy the multiple benefits we have enumerated with ease, assuming a client application that exposes cell properties. While Reporting Services does not expose them directly, there are other ways to make cube-based formatting just as accessible to report authors there, as well. (I introduce variations on this theme within articles of my MSSQL Server Reporting Services series at Database Journal).

Conclusion

In this article, we resumed a discussion that is no doubt familiar to anyone who regularly reads my articles about the integrated Microsoft business intelligence solution. We mentioned considerations surrounding the “placement of the intelligence” within the layers of the solution, and then focused upon another specific example of such a consideration here: the placement of the logic to support conditional formatting in the Reporting layer. We emphasized the fact that selection among the various layers for positing business intelligence support can become extremely important in enterprise-level design and implementation, and that “multi-level awareness” – and often expertise - within the team involved is required to optimize a multi-level solution.

We noted that, because most enterprise reporting tools (such as MSSQL Server Reporting Services) make conditional formatting easy to put into place, and because it is within the deployed reports that the resulting data presentations are manifest, it is often assumed that conditional formatting is naturally handled within the Reporting layer. Because conditional formatting expressions can become complicated and resource intensive, processing time and other attributes of report processing can be adversely affected, and report maintenance can become overly cumbersome.

As a possible means of optimizing the overall business intelligence solution, we proposed that the Analysis Services layer might serve as an optimal home for conditional formatting support. We examined three examples of setting cell properties within Analysis Services with conditional logic to support this. Finally, we verified the effectiveness of our approach via the Cube Browser, and discussed how we might leverage our conditionally determined cell properties within the Reporting layer.

» See All Articles by Columnist William E. Pearson, III

Discuss this article in the MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services and MDX Topics Forum.

Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services Series
Introduction to Security in Analysis Services
Cube Storage: Planning Partitions from a SQL Server Management Studio Perspective
Cube Storage: Planning Partitions (Business Intelligence Development Studio Perspective)
Cube Storage: Introduction to Partitions
Introduction to Cube Storage
Attribute Discretization: Customize Grouping Names
Attribute Discretization: Using the "Clusters" Method
Attribute Discretization: Using the "Equal Areas" Method
Attribute Discretization: Using the Automatic Method
Introduction to Attribute Discretization
More Exposure to Settings and Properties in Analysis Services Attribute Relationships
Attribute Relationships: Settings and Properties
Introduction to Attribute Relationships in MSSQL Server Analysis Services
Attribute Member Values in Analysis Services
MSSQL Analysis Services - Attribute Member Names
Attribute Member Keys - Pt II: Composite Keys
Attribute Member Keys - Pt 1: Introduction and Simple Keys
Dimension Attributes: Introduction and Overview, Part V
Dimension Attributes: Introduction and Overview, Part IV
Dimension Attributes: Introduction and Overview, Part III
Dimension Attributes: Introduction and Overview, Part II
Dimension Attributes: Introduction and Overview, Part I
Dimensional Model Components: Dimensions Part II
Dimensional Model Components: Dimensions Part I
Manage Unknown Members in Analysis Services 2005, Part II
Manage Unknown Members in Analysis Services 2005, Part I
Alternatively Sorting Attribute Members in Analysis Services 2005
Introduction to Linked Objects in Analysis Services 2005
Distinct Counts in Analysis Services 2005
Positing the Intelligence: Conditional Formatting in the Analysis Services Layer
Administration and Optimization: SQL Server Profiler for Analysis Services Queries
Mastering Enterprise BI: Time Intelligence Pt. II
Mastering Enterprise BI: Time Intelligence Pt. I
Design and Documentation: Introducing the Visio 2007 PivotDiagram
Actions in Analysis Services 2005: The URL Action
Actions in Analysis Services 2005: The Drillthrough Action
Mastering Enterprise BI: Introducing Actions in Analysis Services 2005
Mastering Enterprise BI: Introduction to Translations
Mastering Enterprise BI: Introduction to Perspectives
Introduction to the Analysis Services 2005 Query Log
Mastering Enterprise BI: Working with Measure Groups
Mastering Enterprise BI: Introduction to Key Performance Indicators
Mastering Enterprise BI: Extend the Data Source with Named Calculations, Pt. II
Mastering Enterprise BI: Extend the Data Source with Named Calculations, Pt. I
Process Analysis Services Objects with Integration Services
Usage-Based Optimization in Analysis Services 2005
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Named Sets Revisited
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Migrating an Analysis Services 2000 Database to Analysis Services 2005
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Introducing Data Source Views
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: MS Excel 2003 and More ...
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Mastering Enterprise BI: Create Aging "Buckets" in a Cube
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Mastering Enterprise BI: Relative Time Periods in an Analysis Services Cube, Part II
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Mastering Enterprise BI: Relative Time Periods in an Analysis Services Cube
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Process Analysis Services Cubes with DTS
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Presentation Nuances: CrossTab View - Same Dimension
Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services: Point-and-Click Cube Schema Simplification
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Manage Distinct Count with a Virtual Cube
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Distinct Count Basics: Two Perspectives
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Semi-Additive Measures and Periodic Balances
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Performing Incremental Cube Updates - An Introduction
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Partitioning a Cube in Analysis Services - An Introduction
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Basic Storage Design
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Derived Measures vs. Calculated Measures
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Creating a Dynamic Default Member
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Another Approach to Local Cube Design and Creation
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Introduction to Local Cubes
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Actions in Virtual Cubes
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Putting Actions to Work in Regular Cubes
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: ProClarity Part II
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: ProClarity Professional, Part I
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Using Calculated Cells in Analysis Services , Part II
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Using Calculated Cells in Analysis Services, Part I
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: MSAS Administration and Optimization: Toward More Sophisticated Analysis
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: MSAS Administration and Optimization: Simple Cube Usage Analysis
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Build a Web Site Traffic Analysis Cube: Part II
Build a Web Site Traffic Analysis Cube: Part I
Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: Cognos PowerPlay
Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: MS FrontPage 2002
Reporting Options for Analysis Services Cubes: MS Excel 2002
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Drilling Through to Details: From Two Perspectives
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Custom Cubes: Financial Reporting - Part II
Introduction to MSSQL Server 2000 Analysis Services Custom Cubes: Financial Reporting (Part I)
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Exploring Virtual Cubes
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Working with the Cube Editor
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Parent-Child Dimensions
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Handling Time Dimensions
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Working with Dimensions
Introduction to SQL Server 2000 Analysis Services: Creating Our First Cube








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