SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer & Discovery
Technical best practices & tutorial
On this page I will share some technical back ground, best practices and tutorials on what I have learnt do far using SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer and Discovery. Lots of the videos here are initially published on my YouTube channel. Here you'll find various playlists; one of them is on SAP Lumira 2.0.
As a starting point I created a fully professionalized Lumira 2.0 Designer application which is based on various storyboards I created with SAP Lumira 2.0 Discovery. It allowed my to study not only the interoperability between Designer and Discovery, but also some of the new features available in Designer. Everything I learned with SAP Design Studio and documented here, I could re-use.
Below are two videos of the Designer dashboard: one as a 10 min overview, and the second slightly more extended focusing on the end user features
Performance Insights dashboard
I created a professionalized dashboard application to use for this review. The dashboard is on product sales and has metrics as actual sales, budgets and forecasts embedded. there are various hierarchies and everything is GEO (lon/lat) enabled. The data was loaded in both xlsx as SAP HANA. To test blending, I created a separate data set at a higher grain to look at global market growth, population and presence. The grain was chosen on purpose; to link it to the core set, I had to choose blending and as such could test the re-use of it in SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer.
The next weeks I will further complete the application with a scorecard and Galigeo GEO maps
Focus areas and quick links
Below are the core topics I cover on this page. Just click the links to navigate directly to them
Interoperability: re-using storyboards, data connections and data mashups
Calculations & blending: re-use extended calculations
Formatting: Conditional Formatting
Templates: using a ready to go template
Screen re-sizing: Adaptive lay-out
Videos: watch the technical videos I created
SAP Lumira 2.0
Technology pages sharing insights, best practices and tutorials on SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer and Discovery
SAP Lumira 2.0
Interoperability: re-using stories, connections and mash-ups
I make a big point out of the interoperability between data exploration tools (self-service) and those tools can create professionalized and authored dashboard applications. One of the key issues nowadays is the disconnect between them. When SAP converged Lumira and Design Studio, it was exactly the interoperability that intrigued me. Why interoperability is so important and what are the typical use cases for it, is described in this article.
How does interoperability work in Lumira 2.0?
A good way of working when you consider to create a professionalized dashboard is to start with SAP Lumira Discovery and acquire and enrich some data that is of your interest. Save you work and use a decent name. This name is important, since Designer will use that name to create a folder with the same name in the section Local Documents. In SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer the folder Local Documents will automatically have your storyboard components. Note: these components are split as per the names of your Discovery stories. So if you create a SAP Lumira 2.0 Discovery file called MyDiscovery with two stories called MyStory1 and MyStory2, Designer will create a folder MyDiscovery in the Local Documents section that has 2 components being MyStory1 and MyStory2.
My personal advise is to split your Discovery visualizations as much over various stories. Since Designer makes separate objects of those, I found it easier to manage and organize this way.
In Designer one can double-click a Discovery story-component so it opens and can be used. Since the components is initially not (yet) part of an application, it can not be run ! To use it in an application, go through following steps:
create a storyboard in SAP Lumira 2.0 Discovery and save it under a decent name. Also name the individual stories
Open SAP Designer 2.0 and go to the Local Documents folder. Scroll to the folder named with he same name as you Discovery story
Right-click on the Local Documents folder and create a new application
Dbl-click on the story component of your interest (located in Local Folders) and go to the Outline
Copy the data sources of your story from the story-outline to the Outline of your new Designer application. Consider the Tip on the right !!
Go back to your Designer application and set up a basic lay-out using grids etc
You can now copy and paste visualizations from the story outline into the Designer application outline. Since you already copied the data sources, the visualizations will perfectly work. Try it a few times; for me this functionality is a delight. It works very easy and simple.
Save your Designer application. Important: you have probably already noticed that there is no export facility anymore in SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer. Strange ?? ...... no ....... Both your Discovery storyboard(s) as the SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer applications are all saved in the same LUMX. So if you create your own Designer application, and want to share it with me (which I would love by the way), just share the accompanying LUMX.
see below screenshots (click to open) with examples
You will notice that the data sources for each Discovery story you want to re-use are automatically named DS_1, DS_2, .. DS_x. I advise you to rename them in the story outline first before copying. Especially if you re-use a lot of stories, all your data sources will have similar names that can confuse. If you close your story after (!) the re-naming, do not save it when asked.
Extended calculations, blending and data mashup
I love this part !! So, what is the story. Anything we all loved about Lumira in regards to data enrichment and data mashup, can easily be re-used via the same concepts as described above. Meaning if you join, merge or blend various data sources, this enrichment is still in place when you re-use the data sources and visualizations in Designer. I have tested it extensively and it works great. There are no limitations. As long as the enrichment can be done in Lumira 2.0 Discovery, you can re-use in Designer.
Even more: all data enrichment like formulas, custom groupings and hierarchies, renaming, aggregations etc. is again available in Designer. This is interoperability to the max !
I have tested what happened when creating extended calculations in Discovery and re-use them in Designer. The extended calculations are a highly useful to create complex calculations like moving averages with resets, difference-from, running calculations or custom calculations like if-then-else.
As you can see on the right, extended calculations are initially set-up in Discovery. Trying to re-use the accompanying data sources and visualizations as described above, I noticed that everything worked perfectly well. You can also use the full dimensionality against them. This is a great feature that saves a lot of time avoiding the custom coding we had to do in the past in Design Studio. I did a measure sliders based on a difference-from calculations and this gives great results and insights. Love it!
The conditional formatting rules that you applied in SAP Lumira 2.0 Discovery can also be re-used in SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer. In fact, if you change the conditional formatting properties of a visualization in your Designer application, you end up in a dialogue box identical to the Discover one. So the steps you take when you want to re-use Discover conditional formatting are:
Set up your conditional formatting in Discovery
Copy sources and visualizations as described above
Copy the Conditional_formatting_Settings object from the Technical Components sections of your story, into the Technical Components section of your Designer application
Apply the object to your visualization in the visualization properties
see below screenshots (click to open) with examples
Just when I thought I had more or less re-used everything possible in Designer, I found out the following:
When you right-click the appropriate folder in the Local Documents of Designer and create a new application, you can of course choose one of the self-service ready to go templates. These are extremely powerful. When doing so - let's choose for example the Generic Analysis one - you can re-use your initial Designer Application as a source !! This is superb and really useful since you can now offer full self-service capabilities to your end users (including bookmarking etc) accompanying your professionalized dashboard !!
One thing I couldn't get to work: I tried to make a direct link from my dashboard application to the generic analysis application using the OpenNewDocument statement. This doesn't work when you operate in local mode (if someone has a work-around, mail me and I offer you a beer:-)). Probably not an issue in day-to-day work, since you would always work in BI Platform mode and then this does work.
Adaptive lay-out: resize output devices
One of the countless new objects of SAP Lumira 2.0 Designer is the Adaptive Layout object. It allows all visualizations that are part of this container, to adapt automatically when screen sizes changes. The videos on top of this page show you how it works. Using the container allows to set up Blocks. Any visualization that is part of a block is adapted; blocks stay respected when re-sizing the screen.
Technical explanation: two videos
To show you how I applied a lot of the things described on this page, I made two explanatory and technical oriented videos using the product performance dashboard I created. Enjoy!
The use of Composites
Lumira 2.0 Designer has a great way of working with composites. I have a series of best practices listed for you as per below