I’d like to post something a little different this week. I just finished up a course on Self Service Business Intelligence. The class was a bit smaller than usual but the number of discussions made up the difference! Here I’d like to present unique questions and answers from this particular week.
How do you get Power View integrated with SharePoint?
Power View is actually a piece of 2012 SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS). So you must have at a minimum the 2012 SSRS add-in installed in your SQL environment (add-in available for SQL Server2008). For maximum benefit, you should also have the Power Pivot for SharePoint installed on your SharePoint farm. Refer to Power View Infrastructure Configuration and Installation for details.
Beyond the GUI: Should it be done?
This was more of a lesson learned from a student. Her organizational motto when developing SharePoint is “If it goes beyond the GUI, should it really be done?”
This is an excellent point. While there are infinite customizations available with SharePoint, it is not simply a development platform. Many capabilities are already built in and available with the knowledge to use them. Before you reach for the code, can SharePoint already do that?
How does SharePoint fit into Document Lifecycle?
Again, not so much a question as learning about how students use SharePoint. SharePoint is not super at creating relationships across items stored in vastly different locations. There are capabilities built into SharePoint to create an excellent document management system; as evidenced by our Enterprise Content Management course. Sometimes, there are requirements that can’t be handled by SharePoint (like intricate related item structures), or there is already a historical investment in another document management system. In these particular instance, SharePoint becomes a great way to make an accessible archive of documentation. SharePoint becomes the last destination for documents to be warehoused as read only copies. This can reduce licensing costs for the other system to just those that need to modify documents and, in many cases, SharePoint is a lot more user friendly for finding documents (Search in 2013 is amazing).
What is DAX?
In the context of the Self-Service BI class it is Data Analysis Expressions. Find more information about it regarding Power Pivot here. The short version is that it is Excel formulas used for Power Pivot.
These are just some of the topics we got into this week. It was a great class and I appreciate everyone that attended. If you are interested in where these discussions originated from, take a look at the curriculum for our Microsoft Self-Service Business Intelligence course. Best wishes on your future SharePoint success!