Business Intelligence with MicroStrategy Cookbook by Davide Moraschi, Packt Publishing Book Review

Business Intelligence with MicroStrategy Cookbook

The Business Intelligence with MicroStrategy Cookbook by Davide Moraschi is my best technical reading experience so far!

Many reasons contribute to it, but first of all it is the author’s manner of writing: some very tasteful humor, openness and being exact to the point. Another is that Davide relentlessly provided short (2 min or so) videos on DropBox that accompany each achievement or goal as you progress thru the book, and a picture worth 1,000 words, we know it best – Business Intelligence developers and alike!

The book is also well structured: it covers a topic and lets you experiment, if you ever get stuck, each section is followed by a how to sort of an explanation.

But most importantly this book teaches you the art of delivering insight, creating a useful and visually powerful content. Across platforms and various technologies. From A RDBMS to Hadoop and Vertica.

Having a relatively decent computer and something like $30, which is the cost of the book (the rest is provided for free by MicroStrategy and other vendors’ technologies used in the book) you can become a Business Intelligence developer. I call this a magnificent opportunity! And I mean it, the author covers not only one or two basic reports, but also some of the most intricate ones (heatmap, double axis, MTD/YTD and more).

For me, quite an experienced Business Intelligence developer who used a variety of tools as Crystal Reports, Brio, JDEdwards Report Writer, ActiveReports, SSRS, SiSense and a few others, MicroStrategy is very much appealing, top of the top competing vendors out there I deem. 

Actually, after reading this book my interest about what else I can do with MicroSrategy actually even arose, this is because I discovered MicroStrategy can deliver reports to the most known mobile platforms and it can even leverage Hadoop to excavate insight from its deeply distributed file system (via Impala or similar MR abstractions). What seems to be missing in the product (not the book), is the statistical analysis integration (R, Julia or Matlab etc.).

It is not necessarily a deficiency (the book already has 300 pages plus), but I would like to have the following topics also included in the book:

  1. How to prepare reports for production, e.g. proper deployment techniques;
  2. Supplementary tools as Command Manager;
  3. Validating user input (report input parameterization is covered), and
  4. Metric Formula Language.
Hopefully in release 2 of the book, as MicroStrategy is releasing new features at a very high pace, Davide will provide this additional content.

Frankly, if I were writing the book I would choose Davide’s style: lots of detailed steps, accompanying videos and some humor. And the book is very well poised for the future.

I am sure I am not the only one who gave and will give a 5 out of 5 star rating.

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Posted on February 28, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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