Great v.10 convenience feature – moving objects

Anyone who has worked on front-end development tasks in QlikView knows what a drag it is trying to reposition objects without a caption bar. Well…those days are done! … with version 10.

In version 10, objects without (or with) captions can be easily moved by holding down the ALT key and dragging them with the mouse.


Associative search in QlikView v.10 list boxes

Okay, I confess I didn’t really “get” this feature when I saw it in the webex demo. But after seeing it again at Q Days in San Diego last week, the lightbulb finally turned on for me.

I’ll do my best to explain it, but I highly recommend that you go check it out yourself at the QlikView v.10 demo site. The application “What’s New in QV10” is a good place to start.

Direct vs. Associative Search

In version 9 a “simple” search function can be achieved by dropping a search object on the page. And then you can configure the properties to search across all fields or narrow it down to specific fields. This is a very effective tool and end-users love it. But it’s not really associative. By that I mean, it’s a direct search; i.e. if I’ve set up the search object to search in the Salesperson field, then I enter some portion of the Salesperson name in the search box. For example, if I know the salesperson’s name is Sharon something, I type “*sha*” and a list of Salespeople with the substring “sha” in their name shows up. Make sense?

But what if I don’t remember any part of the Salesperson’s name, but I remember some other things associated to the salesperson. Like what they’ve sold. Or to whom they’ve sold …

In version 10 associative search, I can search for Salesperson by entering keywords about other fields that are associated to Salesperson (like Customer, Product, etc.) So in the example above, if I couldn’t even remember any part of the Salesperson’s name, BUT I did remember she works in Germany (Business Unit) and sells Milk (Product) and sells to ActiveDesign (Customer) then I can use associative search and hopefully zero-in on her…

A Use Case

This series of screen shots walk through the scenario I outlined above.

Step 1 – I open the search bar on the Salesperson list box (the magnifying glass) and type “germa”

Step 2 – I click on BusinessUnit_EN = GERMANY

Step 3 – I then type “milk” in the same search bar

Step 4 – I click on Product Sub Group = Milk

Step 5 & 6 – Finally I type “activ” in the search bar and click on Customer = ActiveDesign

Step 7 – with these associations, my list box has been reduced to one value – Sharon Carver –> I have my answer!

Step 8 – Optionally, I can explicitly select Sharon Carver and filter my whole model to her for further analysis

A Couple of Points

  • IMPORTANT – the selections you make in the search list do not affect the rest of the model. In other words, when I selected BusinessUnit_EN = GERMANY in the search box, my dashboard didn’t change. (You can watch the Current Selections to verify that.) I suppose that depending on the scenario this could be slightly inconvenient. But I really find it to be useful, because I don’t want to change my model selections…I just want to find Salesperson = Sharon Carver, in this example.
  • I found myself having to type slower than normal in the search box. Not a big deal, but it took a while to get used to. (Maybe it will be more natural in the final v.10 release.)

So…another great feature for end-users coming in version 10!


QlikView version 10 – coming soon….

I finally saw the demo of QlikView version 10 this week, presented by Anthony Deighton of QlikTech. And I am chomping at the proverbial bit to get my hands on it. The official launch date is 10/10/10 (cute).

A number of impressive new features are included, and a few in particular stood out

  • Metrics in list boxes – extending the existing feature of allowing a frequency metric in a list box, you can now put in any metric (presumably through the Expression Editor which wasn’t shown). You can even do a microchart. I’m not entirely sure how this is conceptually different from the existing Straight Table object…perhaps the list boxes quicker to configure? At a minimum though, I could this as being a handy feature when profiling new data sources (I’ll take this up in a future blog topic.)
  • Container objects – a great way to better manage screen “real estate.” This will get around the hassle of setting up icon minimize/maximize cycles. And moreover I think the selection options presented in the Container object will be more obvious to business users who are new to any given application.
  • Mekko charts – hmmm… I’m not sure how useful these will be. I mean, I get the fact that now another “degree of freedom” can be encoded in a two-dimensional bar/column chart (by varying the bar width with an additional expression). I get it, bravo, well done. …But, I’m just not sure how easy they will be for the “average bear” to interpret. I’ll be interested to put these in front of some business users and get their feedback.
  • Extensions are a new feature that, well…extend the existing functionality. One of the extensions I could see using is the Gantt chart. The other ones I saw looked like more “eye candy” than anything. I’m sure Stephen Few will have some priceless and spot-on comments on these :)

In addition to gobs of GUI goodness, there are also some impressive changes coming to the ETL scripting and server administration:

  • Multi-threaded reloads – yay! Now I can get my money’s worth on that 16-core processor!
  • Easier user administration in QV Server – my admin will love me!
  • Version control … although, before getting too excited on deploying this, it will certainly need a test drive (check out the commentary at Guerrilla BI).
  • Other improvements to the scripting tool – I heard “type-ahead completion” mentioned, but didn’t catch whether that was to be in v.10 or not

SO…get ready…10/10/10 !