The evolution of Crystal Reports
White paper special
While databases have proved adept at holding vast sums of really useful information, they have lagged when it comes to serving up data in a way suited to human consumption.
Two changes, though, have come to the rescue.
The first was Online-Analytical Processing (OLAP), which let users slice and dice data in all kinds of sophisticated ways. The second change is taking place right now: reporting delivered as a web-based service, which is altering the ways users share information.
Crystal Reports, owned by Business Objects and now SAP, is putting its 24-years' experience in relational data and OLAP online with crystalreports.com, which lets users publish and share reports and queries.
To find out more, check out the sponsored white paper Crystal Reports 2008, From OLAP to SaaS: The Evolution of Reporting here.®
Think you've got the wrong target in your sights
If you guys were sold it as anything more than making your data pretty, then I'm sorry. Our group has always used it as such and relied on WebI to provide analytics and it fills that niche well.
If you want to piss and moan, piss and moan to your sales rep and IT purchasing person.
It's not just the sharks at Business Objects that do this. Every company that peddles BI solutions claims their product will array your data beautifully, answer life's big questions, and cure cancer. I've seen reps peddling Microstrategy and Cognos do it at shops I've worked for (and both succeed...bastards). Single tool solutions never cover all the needs for an entire enterprise.
I'd be intrigued to here peoples views on Alternatives.
We use SQL Server 2005 reporting services, and I can't say
that I've got any good words for that either.
>What they fail to understand though is that if they are having problems
>learning to use one of the most powerful reporting tools out there, it's
>their problem and a failure on their part to learn to use it correctly. There
>is a reason it's so popular you know.
Popularity isn't a reason to purchase a product. I've seen plenty of purchasing managers suckered by the sales pitch of "Fortune 500 Company X is using it and they love it" and buying it after a hasty (crap) demo.
I suspect folks that are pissing and moaning are doing so because someone else saddled them with the tool and said "Make it do this! The vendor said we could" after a demo like that.
Crystal does one thing very very well. It takes a query and makes it presentable to your end users. When used like that it's a valuable tool. When coupled with tools like business objects (DeskI or WebI) or Microstrategy and a business plan that allows the tools to play to their strengths it becomes even more valuable.
Having been saddled with a "one tool fits all" environment, I can see why folks would be pissed (it was microstrategy in my case, which sucked at handling presentable reports).