Steve Jobs once said, “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower”. Well, our Business Intelligence (BI), Analytics, and Data Visualization software, Dundas BI, is already a leader in the BI space when it comes to raw functionality and that’s a mantle we don’t plan on abdicating any time soon.
Let’s take a look at three very exciting and innovative capabilities in Dundas BI 7; from new ways to work with the application to an entirely new way of deploying and managing it.
Linux Installation Support
The back-end programming language used to create Dundas’ software over the years has always been C# and .Net Framework. These have been fantastic tools with the only real limitation being that they only work on Microsoft Operating Systems.
Disclaimer: I’m talking about the back-end – where the Dundas BI server is hosted – only supporting Microsoft technologies. Since Dundas BI uses a browser on its front-end, clients can use any operating system they want to view and create content.
That being said, in September of 2019, Microsoft released .NET Core, which is a free and open-source version of the .NET framework intended to be cross-platform. With the release of the .NET Core framework, we are proud to be able to say that Dundas BI is now available to be installed and hosted on a Linux server.
With the introduction of Dundas BI on Linux, you now have more freedom to deploy and manage Dundas BI according to your organization’s IT standards.
Since Dundas BI can now be run on a Linux server, you no longer need to worry about the added costs of running a Microsoft server if your internal ecosystem is not tied to Microsoft. Being forced to get a Windows server when you don’t usually run one can add additional hardware and licensing costs to your BI project and can be a barrier you don’t need.
Disclaimer: It should also be noted that some Microsoft-only functionality had to be disabled on the Linux version of the Dundas BI server as some of these protocols are simply not supported by Linux. This is something that would only be noticed if your company has both Microsoft and Linux servers at the same time and you are relying on some Microsoft tools. If you’re in this position, we recommend opting for the Microsoft server if given the choice as you will want to maximize your reporting functionality. Some of these limitations include OLAP support, SharePoint connectivity, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM as these are all tools that someone running Linux-only IT infrastructure would not have in place.
Natural Language Querying
In the age of Google Home and Amazon Alexa, it seems like everyone enjoys talking to their computers. Well, now you can do the same with your favorite Business Intelligence tool! Dundas BI now has support for Natural Language Querying, which allows you to type simple commands in English to perform data discovery functions.
Instead of searching menus, dragging-and-dropping datasets, or working with toolbars, you can tell Dundas BI what you want to see using simple text instructions. The new system is easy to use and can be executed with simple commands like “Use Sales Data”, “Add Sales”, “Add Countries” and “Filter Countries for Canada”. These natural and simple commands will help you create the visualizations you want to see without breaking a sweat. Tell the system what you want, and let it do the heavy-lifting for you.
Menu Navigation Control
For years, the line between websites and dashboards has been one that is ever-blurring. Very seldom do I ever step into a BI project where a single dashboard is required and viewed directly in Dundas BI. Instead, users demand a look and feel identical to working with an internal web portal.
Users don’t want to go into a Business Intelligence tool to get their reporting. Instead, they want to hit a link in their browser and subsequently be taken directly to content that interests them. The problem, however, is that because we’re directly navigating to content and only showing said content in a BI tool, you need a way to allow users to navigate more easily from page to page to page.
In previous versions of Dundas BI, you could certainly build your own navigation but the end result was typically either very simplistic and lacking in functionality or required the use of advanced scripting to achieve something more complex.
Prior to Dundas BI 7, to design an effective navigation experience you needed to rely on primitive controls like dropdowns, buttons, labels, and often custom script.
With the release of Dundas BI 7, the new Menu Navigation Control can be easily added to your dashboard and configured to look and act the way you want without the need for code. This makes creating a navigation experience exponentially more user-friendly.
If you love coding your own custom navigation, that’s of course still possible, but the need for it is certainly diminished now.
The Menu Navigation Control was designed through discussions with the consultants at Dundas BI along with an understanding of the requirements most often encountered by them over the last few years. It’s an incredibly versatile control that can present many different layout options and styles.
You have your own branding requirements in the dashboards that you build, and this control will fit your style as if it were designed specifically for you.
Dundas BI 7 is here, but that doesn’t mean the innovation is coming to a stop. Our platform is constantly moving forward, evolving, and bringing you cutting-edge capabilities to handle your data analytics. This blog offers just a glimpse into this powerful, new version. There’s plenty of new features and capabilities in this release, and even more on the horizon. I hope you’re as excited as I am!
Interested in seeing what else Dundas BI 7 has to offer? Schedule a personal live demo with a Dundas Solution Architect or start your free evaluation of Dundas BI 7 today! With Dundas BI, the possibilities are infinite.
About the AuthorMore Content by Jeff Hainsworth