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New Power BI stand-alone Designer, Dashboards, APIs & iOS App

This week Microsoft announced the availability of Power BI Dashboards and the browser-based dashboard designer.  What is it and why is it important?  The most significant thing about it is that report and dashboard users do not need to have Excel 2013 ProPlus edition or an Office 365 subscription to…

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0 comments, 86 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 20 December 2014

Drill-through to Details from Reporting Services to Excel

Can an SSRS report be designed to drill-through to an Excel workbook in-context (showing only the same filtered detail data)? I have to admit that I have been chasing this solution for a few years now before I was motivated enough to work it through to a viable result. More…

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2 comments, 213 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 1 December 2014

SQL Server Upgrade Preconference at PASS Summit 2014

Please join my associates and I for an all-day SQL Server Upgrade workshop on November 3rd If you are planning an upgrade to a newer version of SQL Server, you won’t want to miss this all-day, preconference workshop. Join John Martin, Sr. Technology Evangelist from Microsoft, will spend the morning…

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0 comments, 161 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 21 October 2014

Adding and Displaying Comments to Power Pivot Results in an Excel Pivot Table

Requirement: Allow users to enter comments after they review results from a Power Pivot model and then show the comment text in the Pivot Table report results. Here’s a quick example of the final result. My example uses Flintstones characters in-place of employee or customer names and a simple measure…

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1 comments, 283 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 6 October 2014

SQL Server MVP for a Sixth Year

Thank you to the Microsoft MVP Program for awarding me MVP for six years running!  I love this program and look forward to another year of great community events and opportunities to advise and mentor.  This year I had the privilege to speak at numerous SQL Saturdays, conferences and user…

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6 comments, 136 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 5 October 2014

So What the Heck is Power BI?

The other day a secondary family member said “we’re still on Microsoft 2010”. Another said “My friend is using Windows 2003 and can’t open a document I sent”. They were apparently talking about versions of Office products. I get so deeply engrained in the Microsoft Business Intelligence community culture that…

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1 comments, 232 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 6 August 2014

Remembering Reed Jacobson

I just received some bad news and found out that a friend passed away today. Reed Jacobson was one of the early leaders in the Microsoft Business Intelligence community. Somewhere around 2004-2008 I worked with Reed at Hitachi Consulting in Seattle where we travelled, taught classes and worked on client…

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10 comments, 177 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 16 July 2014

Business Intelligence Roles and Team Composition

On Business Intelligence projects of all sizes, the composition of the team is a crucial element for success. What is the organization of a functional BI team? How do the individual roles and disciplines contribute to a successful outcome? How is team composition different for self-service and business-owned BI projects?…

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0 comments, 75 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 17 June 2014

SSAS Performance Logger Now Available

I’ve created a simple query performance logging tool for Analysis Services, called the SSAS Performance Logger.  The tool allows you to navigate through the metadata for a tabular model and select from measures and table attributes to build a simple query which is executed and timed.  The query can be…

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5 comments, 185 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 3 June 2014

What Does it Cost to Implement a Business Intelligence Project?

Someone recently asked me through LinkedIn how much it would cost to implement a BI project with Microsoft tools.  This is a big question that can’t easily be answered without understanding the variables of scale, complexity, user and business requirements.  My knee jerk reaction to a question like this is…

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2 comments, 350 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 17 May 2014

What’s Happening at the PASS Business Analytics Conference?

Watch below for live updates during the conference Stay tuned and you’ll find out what’s going on during this week in San Jose.  I’ll be blogging from the conference as announcements are made and as the rest of the community buzzes about new developments in the community and here at…

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0 comments, 172 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 7 May 2014

Creating a Dynamic, Parameterized Measure in DAX

As I continue to explore the many facets of DAX functions, I’m finding more creative ways to add business value and simplify user experiences.  In this post, I will demonstrate how to use slicers to pass values into a calculated measure in an SSAS Tabular model to dynamically change the…

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6 comments, 342 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 20 April 2014

Images, charts, indicators and sparklines in a tablix stretch and degrade report performance

This fact is probably not documented very well but this is an important factor in SSRS visual report design… The use of rectangles is very much a core part of Reporting Services report design and a difference in behavior is expected.  Cells in a tablix will grow vertically to accommodate…

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3 comments, 322 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 26 September 2013

Showing a 100% Progress Gauge in Power View

What I’m going to show you is not rocket science.  This one gets filed under the category of “well, duh.  That was easy  …now that I see how to do it.” Power View sets the maximum value for a chart series based on the maximum unfiltered axis value; pretty simple…

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0 comments, 349 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 1 August 2013

DAX: Returning the Nth Selected Value in a Slicer

A client came to me with a challenge this week that, although simple in concept, posed an interesting challenge that I hadn’t solved before using a tabular model and DAX.  She had cost information for several hospitals in a PowerPivot model.  Using an Excel pivot table published to a SharePoint…

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1 comments, 399 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 13 July 2013

We’ve Got The Power: “Power BI”, New Microsoft BI Suite Announced

Power BI: a new suite of Business Intelligence tools Over the past few months, teams at Microsoft have made several new Business Intelligence tools available for preview; some only privately and some to the public.  The entire suite will soon be available for either public preview or release under the…

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3 comments, 375 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 9 July 2013

SQL Server Pro Article: Custom Programming to Enhance SSRS Reports

I’m very excited to see my first feature article published in SQL Server Pro Magazine titled Custom Programming to Enhance SSRS Reports; How to write a custom assembly and use it to build a dynamic report dataset.  The article was posted online in April and featured in the July printed…

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5 comments, 425 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 2 July 2013

Book Review: Instant Creating Data Models with PowerPivot How-to

I recently had the opportunity to review a pre-published copy of the “Instant” series book “Creating Data Models with PowerPivot How-to” by Leo Taehyung Lee, published by Packt Publishing. This is a short, concise book; only 46 pages long.  Quite honestly, if I had picked up this book for myself,…

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0 comments, 313 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 13 June 2013

Time to Complete the 2013 BI Survey

It’s that time of year again… end of the school year, graduation, Fathers’ Day and of course; time to take the annual BI Survey!  The survey is an annual report conducted by Business Application Research Center (BARC), an independent software industry analyst, comparing the industry BI tools rated by thousands…

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0 comments, 272 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 10 June 2013

Taking the Tabular Journey

A Getting-Started and Survival Guide for planning, designing and building Tabular Semantic Models with Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Analysis Services. by Paul Turley This post will be unique in that it will be a living document that will be updated and expanded over time.  I will also post-as-I-go on the…

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4 comments, 436 reads

Posted in SQL Server BI Blog on 2 June 2013

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