Getting Started with BICS – The Home Dashboard

This edition of “Getting Started with BICS” focuses on signing into your BICS instance and what the items on the initial dashboard are, where they go, and how they can be used. So, let’s start by logging into BICS:

This is what your initial dashboard will look like. I’ve numbered the different areas that I’m going to explain and go into each with the corresponding numbers below.

1. This is the quick list to your most recent works. You can also choose to see your list of favorites.

2. If you click the “Tour” button, you’ll be brought to a popup screen with a very high overview of what is available to you in BICS. There are no other actions with this button.

3. If you are just starting with BICS, the “Academy” button could be your best friend. For each part of the BICS tool, you can see videos on how to create, say, an analysis, dashboard, or a data model.

4. The “Create” button is where you can start to create various parts of a BI project. I’m just going to touch on these topics briefly as they will each be their own topic in coming posts.

a. VA Project – This will bring you to the Visual Analyzer screen where you can dynamically visualize ad hoc reports on your data. If you have used Data Visualization, you will notice the tool looks like DV. Well, it is with a different name, but included in BICS. You can upload your own data here and/or connect to databases to “mashup” and “wrangle” disparate data sources into one (or more) visualizations.

b. Dashboard – You will be taken to a quick screen where you can give a name and location to start a new dashboard. More details on dashboards in a later post.

c. Analysis – You will be shown a screen (below) that will give you the option to choose a data source from which to build your analysis. Note that you will need to load your data source prior to creating an analysis. You can also choose to create a subject area (last line of the prompt) versus choosing an established data source.

Once the Subject Area is selected, you will be brought to the Analysis build area.

d. Dashboard Prompt – Before a prompt can be created, you must choose a data source (Subject Area) first.

Once you choose a Subject Area, then you can start the process to create a Dashboard Prompt.

e. Filter – This will allow you to create a filter for your Subject Area.

Once you choose a Subject Area, then you can start the process to create a Subject Area Filter.

f. Action – This acts almost like a URL link, allowing you to create a link to go directly to an Analysis, Dashboard, and/or URL.

5. This link will take you to the Data Loader tool to load data to the database. You will go through a screen by screen process to load your data properly.

6. Clicking on “VA Projects” will take you to Visual Analyzer.

From here, you can go to created projects or choose to create a new project.

7. Clicking on “Dashboards” will take you to, well, Dashboards.

From here, you can go to created dashboards or choose to create a new dashboard.

8. Clicking on “Analyses” will take you to each of your analysis components for viewing and editing.

From here, you can go to created analyses or choose to create a new analysis.

9. Clicking on “Catalog” will take you to each of the items in your BICS instance. These include dashboards, reports, analyses, and subject areas.

In this view, you have the option to do the following to the different parts of your projects:

10. Clicking on “Modeler” will take you to where you can define the relationships between Subject Areas and data in your instance to create models, including variables and roles in the models.

11. Clicking on “Console” will take you to an administrator-like console for various different components of BICS including the following list. I will go into greater detail on these items in a later blog post.

12. Finally, in the drop down by your name, you have the option to view your account, go to Help links, see details about your BICS instance, or sign out.

The next blog post will go into the Console details. Stay tuned!

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