Data Discovery provides numerous techniques and approaches for delivering the core functionality of querying and navigating data - with the sole aim of making data and analysis simple, intuitive yet sophisticated and comprehensive.
There are 3 general techniques for querying data:
- Context Menus : attached to the grids and charts reporting components. (A separate report-wide shortcut context menu is available in place of the querying ribbon functions below)
- The Metadata Tree panels: Selection, Hierarchy and Element Panels (and simplified element lists via Slicers)
- Query Ribbon: Filters and Sorts; Custom Members and Sets
The right-click context menus for all reporting components provide quick and direct functions for querying your data within the context of the results produced from the last run query. Using functions such as drill down, drill up, dicing , expand, collapse, focus and eliminate; users can quickly query and re-query the cube without needing to wade through the more complex metadata trees.
Queries executed through the context menus execute instantly and are immediately and fully reflected in all the other query-related components.
Owing to their simplicity, context menus are readily available in all workspace types and are designed for all user types: consumer to professional. They are also available in the Story Board application.
Click here for a more in-depth review of these functions and the context menus attached to grids and charts.
The metadata trees (selection panel, hierarchies panel and elements panel) are designed for quick and powerful query construction. They incorporate the ability to select multiple dimensions, hierarchies, levels and member elements and to place them in specific positions in the result set.
- The Selections Panel provides an interactive set of containers or "zones" that allow users to add and remove different hierarchies from the underlying query. The Selections Panel includes both drag-and-drop capabilities and context menus.
- The Hierarchies Panel provides an interactive tree panel that allows users to browse the hierarchical structure of the cube at the "dimensional" level. Users can select which hierarchies and levels to include in their query. The Hierarchies Panel includes both drag-and-drop capabilities and context menus.
- The Elements Panel provides an interactive tree panel that allows users to browse the individual member elements of a selected dimensional hierarchy and navigate between parent and child elements that they may want to use in the underlying query. The Element panel includes feature rich context menus.
- Slicers provide a convenient method to simplify access to dimensional selections by allowing report writers to extract key member elements out of the element tree so that end users will not need to use the more complex dimensional trees.
- SubSets are similar to Slicers with one key difference. While Slicers provide a slicer box for user selections, SubSet remain in background mode meaning the end user cannot change the SubSet values.
NOTE: When the metadata tree changes do not execute immediately, the user can click the EXECUTE button to run the query.
The query ribbon (which is also reflected in the report-wide context menu) provides access to advanced querying functions:
- Filtering: a query construct that will limit the number of rows and/or columns returned by a query to those elements that match the filter. These functions include top and bottom counts, top and bottom sums, top and bottom percents, value driven filters (above, below and in-between). Click here for more.
- Sorting: a query construct for sorting the result set returned by the query. This function includes ascending and descending capabilities with hierarchical sorting. Click here for more.
- Non-Empty Filters: a query switch to filter out blank rows or columns or both. Click here for more.
- Pivoting: a query construct to switch the column selections with the row selections.
- MDX Editor and Custom Calculations: provide the ultimate in advanced querying capabilities, exposing the ENTIRE query for complete customization complete with the cube's metadata and the ENTIRE MDX function listing as well as the ability to define user based calculations and sets with menu driven wizards and advanced designers. Click here for more.