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8. The Analysis View

8. The Analysis View

The ReportServer analysis view is used both by the pivot mode of the dynamic list (see chapter 7.) and by OLAP reports. The handling is almost identical in both cases. The main difference is that in OLAP reports no further setting options can be made outside the analysis view. In the pivot mode of the dynamic list, on the other hand, you as the end user define dimensions and key figures and can limit the data totals using pre-filters and create new attributes using calculated fields.

8.1 Fundamentals

The analysis view consists of four areas. The toolbar is located centrally at the top. This provides various options for customizing the view. The available dimensions and key figures can be found on the left-hand side. On the right, you can switch between data and chart mode. In the center, as usual, you will find the main view in which the data is displayed.

To understand the basic mode of operation, it is easiest to think in terms of a (multidimensional) cross table. The following table is a representation of the product survey data from Chapter 7 (Table ).

  Male Female
20 - 40 40+ 20 - 40 40+
Electric Television 3,7 4 3 4
Refrigerator 3,75   4  
Food Muesli 4 4 3  
Chocolate 4,5 3,5 3,75 3

Here, grouping characteristics are arranged both in the columns and in the rows. Key figures are aggregated in the average of the grouping characteristics. The cell with a gray background thus contains the average rating of male respondents over 40 for the TV product. Schematically, we can represent such a crosstab as follows:

  Column features
Lines Features Aggregation

The basic mode of operation now corresponds to the structure of such a crosstab. In the center view, you will see the Columns and Rows areas (we will discuss the Filter area later). Here you distribute the desired dimensions, in the example above product category and gender. Simply drag the dimensions from the left to the column or row area with the mouse. As soon as at least one dimension is distributed to each of the rows and columns, a cross table is displayed below (depending on the amount of data, this may take a few moments).

For example, if we drag the characteristic Product category to Rows and Gender to Columns, the following table is displayed.

 

  Male Female
Electric 3,8 3,7
Food 4 3,5

If none has been explicitly selected, the first one in the list is used as the aggregation key figure. To make this explicit, drag the desired aggregation (in the example) value to the columns or rows. If a key figure is dragged to columns, the following screen appears

  Male Female
Rating Rating
Electric 3,8 3,7
Food 4 3,5

8.2 Dimensions

The existing dimensions are displayed as a folder on the left. One or more characteristics can belong to a dimension. For example, the dimension Time can contain the characteristics Year, Month and Day. To view the existing characteristics, open the dimension folder.

8.2.1 The (All) Feature

In addition to the existing characteristics, you will see a characteristic (All) for each dimension. You can drag this to rows or columns in the same way as other characteristics. The (All) characteristic basically describes the entire dimension and thus provides a further aggregation level. In the example above, product category and product would form a common dimension. The product dimension would therefore be displayed on the left as follows:

Produkt
   +---- (All)
   +---- Produktkategorie
   +---- Produkt

If you now set the (All) characteristic to Rows and the key figure Rating to Columns, the following results table is obtained:

  Rating
All products 3,76

The (All) feature now allows you to look deeper into the dimension, i.e. to add further aggregation levels. To display sub-levels of the dimension, left-click on the "All products" label in the displayed crosstab and select Show children from the context menu. This causes the display to change as follows:

  Rating
All products 3,76
Electric 3,75
Food 3,77

You can now descend further into the dimension or, conversely, remove divisions.

8.3. The Toolbar

In the following, we present the toolbar options in detail. From left to right, you will find them here:

Execute query Executes the currently configured query. As a rule, queries are executed directly as soon as a change has been made (see next tool). If this option is not activated, the query can be started manually.
Automatic execution By default, the display is reloaded as soon as a change is made. With large amounts of data, this can lead to a heavy load on the server and correspondingly long waiting times. The automatic execution of queries can be switched off here.
Show/hide fields Hides the Columns/Rows/Filters fields.
Show/hide dimensions Hides the left sidebar (dimensions and key figures).
Parents hide Hides rows in the results list that do not have a value at the current aggregation level.
Suppress zero Hides empty cells in the result.
Drill on cell Allows you to display the data records that have led to an aggregation result. See also section 8.6.
Export Drill Exports the result of a drill operation. See also section 8.6.
Reload Reloads the analysis view. This is particularly important when working in pivot mode of the dynamic list in order to transfer changes to other aspects (e.g. adding key figures and dimensions) to the analysis view.

8.4 Filters and Sorting

If you have dragged a characteristic to a row or column, you can set up additional filters for it. To do this, click on the magnifying glass next to a characteristic to open the filter dialog. The filter dialog has a similar structure to the dynamic list. If you are working in the pivot mode of a dynamic list, we recommend using the pre-filter aspect for complex filters or when filtering on attributes with large values.

If you want to filter on dimensions that should not appear in the result set, you can drag them to the filter area.

8.4.1 Sorting

If you have dragged a characteristic to a row or column, you can activate sorting for this characteristic using the arrows displayed there (next to the magnifying glass).

8.5 Diagram Mode

Instead of displaying as a cross table, you can switch to diagram mode via the right-hand sidebar. Many different chart types are available here. Of course, you can also export a report in analysis mode as a chart or integrate such a chart into your dashboard.

8.6. Drill

The drill function allows you to display the data records on which an aggregation result is based. To do this, select the drill tool from the toolbar and then click on an aggregation result. In the following dialog, you can adjust the output by selecting the dimensions and key figures to be returned. You can also limit the maximum size of the result set. Please note that large result sets can have a significant impact on the performance of the system and should therefore be exported (Drill Export button in the toolbar).

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