Actuate Releases End User Authored Dashboards and Scalable In-memory Analytics
San Mateo, Calif. – September 14, 2010 – Actuate Corporation (NASDAQ: ACTU), The people behind BIRT® and the leader in open source Business Intelligence, today announced the release of BIRT 360 and BIRT Data Analyzer. These new additions to the product line deliver flexible, highly adoptable in-memory analytics and dashboarding capabilities and are part of ActuateOne (see press release titled ‘Announcing ActuateOne’). In keeping with the core tenets of ActuateOne, the analytics and dashboarding capabilities are based upon one design, one server and one user experience to improve developer productivity and optimize the end user experience within a unified environment. ActuateOne includes release 11 of Actuate’s value added products for the Eclipse BIRT open source project.
As data consolidation and analysis requirements arise – increasingly a daily occurrence – new, dimensionalized datasets can be created in minutes and leveraged using ActuateOne. Analysis and data consumption requirements rarely adhere to a fixed structure for long - as often necessitated by data-warehouse-centric architectures. ActuateOne enables BI analysts and end users to remain agile in their thinking, by offering an easily modified and responsive user experience that allows end users to visualize and analyze data without help from IT.
“The requirement to make information more available and analytics easier to generate has increased the demand for technology that can bridge across IT and business,” said Mark Smith, CEO and EVP Research at Ventana Research. “ActuateOne brings new innovation in the simplicity of assembly of information and analytics that make Business Intelligence and Information applications more effective for businesses to consume and generate through its sophistication in areas like open source, scalability and mobility.”
“By integrating and simplifying how data from multiple sources is handled and unifying it for users, Actuate is able to transform the work of the open source Eclipse BIRT community into enhanced and extended functionality for BI and information applications, both open source and commercial,” said Jay Lyman, enterprise software analyst with The 451 Group.
“We are looking forward to incorporating Actuate release 11 OLAP analysis into our Internet Laboratory Information Management System (ILIMS), so that clients of Charles River Diagnostic Services worldwide can dynamically and easily generate flexible summaries of their test results and of other ILIMS data,” said William Shek, Senior Scientific Director, Charles River Laboratories International, Inc.
BIRT Data Analyzer: In-memory Analytics No Longer Limited to Power Users
ActuateOne introduces BIRT-based analytics that dramatically simplify data analysis, providing business users with a dynamic cross-tab analytic interface to help them make better decisions. BIRT Data Analyzer helps business users uncover trends, identify anomalies and model scenarios for business forecasting and improved understanding of their data.
The new, in-memory online analytical processing (OLAP) analytics capabilities are the result of significant enhancements in release 11 of Actuate’s value added offerings for BIRT, which support the entire spectrum of rich data visualizations, interactivity and analysis. The ActuateOne architecture provides multiple ways to embed and contextually deliver information to users to address their analytics needs while promoting efficiency and productivity through reuse.
BIRT 360: User-driven Analytic and Operational Dashboards
ActuateOne adds BIRT 360, an integrated dashboard capability that puts the power to create dashboards in the hands of users, freeing up IT time and resources. BIRT 360 utilizes the popular Google Gadget standard, thus enabling BIRT 360 to not only leverage BIRT-based gadgets but also third-party Google Gadgets to create mashup applications.
BIRT 360 provides users with two types of dashboards, both of which enable any user to create visually rich, dynamic dashboards on the fly:
- Operational dashboards: Business users can interact with or drill-down on individual KPIs to answer specific business questions. The dashboard interface is designed for business users to allow them to create custom dashboard pages without IT intervention and continuously monitor KPIs for faster response to changing data.
- Analytic dashboards: BIRT 360 Analytic Dashboards are visual data exploration applications. Combining a set of filter gadgets with a set of KPIs built using rich visualizations, users are prompted to explore and drill-down into data to gain insights into their business. BIRT 360 makes it easy for business users to uncover trends and perform root-cause analysis.
BIRT 360 also allows any combination of the above as well as incorporating interactive BIRT reports, web pages and any other web content that leverages the Google Gadgets standard. Using BIRT 360, users are able to incorporate diverse information sources into one highly visual and highly interactive dashboard.
“Live” Excel® spreadsheets
ActuateOne includes the ability to export BIRT content to Excel® to create analysis-ready “live” spreadsheets. Business users can now perform “what-if” analysis on the exported workbook. Users can also choose to export the entire BIRT document or a single item like a chart, table or crosstab to Excel, giving them the flexibility to limit the data they want to analyze. Enhanced capabilities of the Excel emitter include:
- Export BIRT charts as live, editable charts in Excel - BIRT charts are converted to live Excel charts with an associated data sheet containing the underlying data. Hence, the business user can alter the visualizations as needed or perform analysis by editing the exported data sheet and instantly see the results of their analysis in the charts.
- Export BIRT crosstabs to Pivot Tables in Excel – BIRT crosstabs are exported as pivot tables along with a separate Excel data sheet containing the underlying data for further analysis.
- Maintain aggregations and calculations in Excel – Aggregations in the BIRT design are converted to the corresponding Excel functions and formulas, enabling users to see the impact of their ‘what-if’ analysis in the spreadsheet. BIRT developers can leverage EasyScript, an Excel-like scripting language, to create formulas and aggregations that are converted to their corresponding functions in Excel.
“The ability of Actuate release 11 to support diverse user needs with functionality such as in-memory analytics and operational dashboards via a single BIRT-based content design should really streamline development, resulting in faster deployment,” said Sunil Kamerkar, Principal of Reporting House. “We’ve always enjoyed the flexibility of BIRT, but these additions raise the bar in BIRT’s appeal for the end users. With the new enhanced graphics, Flash® Objects and personalized dashboards; we believe the demand for release 11 among our client base will be strong to say the least.”
“With ActuateOne’s one user experience, one design and one server, we’re in a position to provide “instant on” analytics, visualization and interactivity,” said Pete Cittadini, CEO and President, Actuate. “By simply turning on ActuateOne to underpin an existing system created using open source BIRT, an enterprise IT department not only realizes all of the benefits and production reliability risk reduction that iServer is famous for. They also realize significant cost reduction by empowering end users to be self sufficient.”
Pricing and Availability
ActuateOne includes release 11 of Actuate’s value-added products for the BIRT open source project, including the latest release of BIRT iServer and two new options, BIRT 360 and BIRT Data Analyzer. ActuateOne will be ready to ship by the end of September and will be generally available in October, 2010. Pricing is available in Named User, Unlimited User CPU Core and flexible Work Unit models.
To Find Out More
To learn more about ActuateOne visit www.actuate.com/ActuateOne. To get more detail on the new features in release 11 visit: www.actuate.com/products or register for the upcoming web seminar titled ‘Game Changing BI: One Design, One Server, One User Experience’ by visiting www.actuate.com/A11Webinar.