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IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio Cookbook - Packt · PDF fileIBM Cognos 10 Report Studio Cookbook...

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  • IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio Cookbook Second Edition

    Ahmed Lashin Abhishek Sanghani

    Chapter No. 2 "Advanced Report Authoring"

  • In this package, you will find: A Biography of the authors of the book

    A preview chapter from the book, Chapter NO.2 "Advanced Report Authoring"

    A synopsis of the books content

    Information on where to buy this book

    About the Authors Ahmed Lashin is a highly motivated Information Technology (IT) professional with more than nine years of experience, most of it in the Business Intelligence and data warehousing domains. His core skills include a full set of BI tools, ETL, and data warehousing tools such as IBM Cognos, IBM DataStage, SAP BusinessObjects, Microsoft SQL Server BI SSIS, SSAS, and SSRS. Through his experience, he has been exposed to many industries such as banking and finance, oil and gas, education, and the automotive industry.

    Currently, Ahmed is working as a Business Intelligence Lead in one of IBM's major global partners. He is also an IBM Certified Cognos Solution Expert.

    For More Information: www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

    http://www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

  • This is Ahmed's first technical book. He is maintaining a technical blog at http://www.alashin.net. You can get in touch with him at [email protected]

    I would like to thank my beloved wife Esraa for all the encouragement and support she has given me. I would also like to thank my mother and my family.

    I would like also to thank my partner Abhishek for his great work and his valuable comments. With your work, Cognos is much more fun.

    A special thanks to Packt Publishing for their efforts. I am sure that I wouldn't have been able to complete this book without their support.

    Abhishek Sanghani was born in India and attended Mumbai University, where he majored in Computer Engineering. He began his career in 2004 as a Business Intelligence and Cognos Consultant, and has worked with leading IT and financial services companies since then.

    He pursued Finance Management along with his work in the field of Cognos and BI, successfully progressing and winning awards and certifications year-on-year. Presently, he is working in the United Kingdom, utilizing his skills of Cognos, SQL, BI, and data warehousing. In his free time, he writes technical blogs and also provides training/seminars on demand.

    He first authored Packt Publishing's book IBM Cognos 8 Report Studio Cookbook, which was well received worldwide. He has recently composed a video course called IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio Fundamentals, which is available on the www.packtpub.com website for download as well as online streaming.

    I would like to thank Ahmed for giving a new life and avatar to my Cookbook, making it suitable for Cognos v10.x. I am sure, this new book with its new content, easy-to-understand recipes, real-life examples, and v10 sample codes, will prove very useful to Report Studio users, project managers, developers, and business analysts.

    I would also like to thank the whole Packt Publishing team for all the hard work and support. On a personal note, I would also like to thank my loving wife Dolly for the encouragement and for putting up with my IT nonsense at the dinner table.

    For More Information: www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

    http://www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

  • IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio Cookbook Second Edition IBM Cognos Report Studio is widely used for creating and managing business reports in medium to large-scale companies. It is simple enough for any business analyst, power user, or developer to pick up and start developing basic reports. However, when it comes to developing more sophisticated, fully functional business reports for wider audiences, report authors will need guidance.

    This book helps you to understand and use all the features provided by the new version of IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio to generate impressive deliverables. It will take you from being a beginner to a professional report author. It bridges the gap between the basic training provided by manuals or trainers and the practical techniques learned over years of practice.

    What This Book Covers Chapter 1, Report Authoring Basic Concepts, introduces you to some fundamental components and features that you will be using in most of the reports. This is meant to bring all readers on the same page before moving on to advanced topics. It covers filters, sorting, aggregations, formatting and conditional formatting, and so on.

    Chapter 2, Advanced Report Authoring, introduces you to the advanced techniques required to create more sophisticated report solutions that meet demanding business requirements. It covers cascaded prompts, master-detail queries, conditional blocks, defining drill links, and overriding the drill links. The most distinguishing recipe in this chapter is Writing back to the database.

    Chapter 3, Using JavaScript Files Tips and Tricks, explains how to manipulate the default selection, titles, visibility, and so on when the prompt page loads. It also explains how to add programmability like validating the prompt selection before submitting the values to the report engine. A favorite recipe in this chapter is Creating a variable width bar chart using JavaScript. The recipes in this chapter open a whole new avenue for you to progress on.

    For More Information: www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

    http://www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

  • Chapter 4, The Report Page Tips and Tricks, shows some techniques to break boundaries and provides some features in reports that are not readily available in the Studio. It also talks about showing images dynamically (traffic lights), handling missing images, dynamic links to external websites (for example, Google Maps), alternating drill links, showing tooltips on reports, minimum column width, and merged cells in Excel output.

    Chapter 5, Working with XML, shows you how to edit the report outside the Studio by directly editing the XML specifications. The recipes in this chapter show you how to save time and quickly change references to old items, copy and paste the drill parameter mappings, and introduce you to important XML tags. The most intriguing recipe in this chapter is A hidden gem in XML row level formatting.

    Chapter 6, Writing Printable Reports, gives you tips and shows you the options available within the Studio to make the reports printable, as business reports need to be printed. This is often ignored during technical specification and development.

    Chapter 7, Working with Dimensional Models, explains how when reports are written against a dimensional data source (or a dimensionally modeled relational schema), a whole new style of report writing is needed. You can use dimensional functions, slicers, and others. Also, filtering and zero suppression are done differently. This chapter talks about such options (as dimensional data sources are becoming popular again).

    Chapter 8, Working with Macros, shows you that even though macros are often considered a framework modeler's tool, they can be used within Report Studio as well. These recipes will show you some very useful macros around security, string manipulation, and prompting.

    Chapter 9, Using Report Studio Efficiently, shows you the Studio options and development practices to get the best out of Report Studio. It will include discussions about Studio options, setting time-outs, capturing the real query fired on a database, handling slow report validation, customizing classes, and so on.

    Chapter 10, Working with Active Reports, introduces you to a new and powerful tool available in IBM Cognos 10 Report Studio called Active Reports. Active Reports allows you to create highly interactive and easy-to-use reports. You will learn some techniques that will change the way your reports look.

    For More Information: www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

    http://www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

  • Chapter 11, Charts and New Chart Features, shows you how to use advanced features in charts available in IBM Cognos Report Studio. These features are based on the new charting engine that was introduced in IBM Cognos Version 10.

    Chapter 12, More Useful Recipes, is an assorted platter of useful recipes, meant to show more workarounds, tricks, and techniques.

    Chapter 13, Best Practices, shows you how to achieve code commenting, version controlling, regression testing, and so on. It will also show you some useful practices you should cultivate as standard during development.

    Appendix, Recommendations and References, covers topics that are very useful for a Cognos report developer such as version controlling, Cognos mash-up service, and Cognos Go Office.

    For More Information: www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

    http://www.packtpub.com/ibm-cognos-10-1-report-studio-cookbook/book

  • 2Advanced Report

    Authoring

    In this chapter, we will cover the following:

    Adding cascaded prompts

    Creating a nested report defi ning the master-detail relationship

    Writing back to the database

    Adding conditional formatting

    Formatting negative values

    Playing with conditional styles

    Using conditional blocks many reports in one

    Defi ning drill-through from crosstab intersection

    Overriding crosstab intersection drill-through defi nitions

    IntroductionNow as you have implemented the recipes in Chapter 1, R

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