In this blog, we will cover the major changes our version 5.0 is undergoing. We have been working on this specific version for nearly 1.5 years. This will be one of the major releases and will try to bring a paradigm shift in how people see open source BI products compared to proprietary BI products.
We are now releasing the snapshot version without the canned reporting and community reporting module. These modules will be added later in the first GA release alongside other additional capabilities.
Let us get started.
Basic Architecture and UI experience
The entire application interface is built as SPA (Single Page Application) with the latest upgraded React Framework and Ant design UI libraries. Being a single web page application, navigation across different pages is much faster. Usage of AntD for building all the modules gives a very consistent user experience. All the modules have undergone user experience improvements based on the user feedback we have been receiving.
Shift to Database
Till now, everything that was earlier saved as physical files in the drive (reports, dashboard, metadata, canned reports, community reports, etc.). With version 5.0 and from now on, everything will be saved in a database. Even the default database, which is Derby (which comes along with the product), is configurable, and you can use any RDBMS DB of your choice.
This facility makes the application faster and better in performance and has more concurrency; it will also allow us to start providing robust logging and auditing capabilities in the product.
A new reporting interface has been introduced, making the entire process of creation of visualization reports with filtering and drill-down capabilities a breeze. This more recent version allows below
- Concept of relative dates is included with features of date ranges like next 3 months, past year, last 15 days etc.
- Includes single information card widget visualisation including mini charts
- Support for dynamic views for advanced filtering
- Separate rows and columns section
- Tableau kind of Grid kind of charting interface support
- Ability to specify color, size, label, tooltip, shape, and many more properties
- Single click option for implementing drill down and drill through
- Filters with advanced options for controlling and configuring Display & Value
- UI-driven cascading filters
- Date /date time filters with prebuilt functions and date ranges
- Autosuggestion-based application of DB functions
- A better option for selecting date picker, date range picker, slider,
- Options like Hide, and Hide and Include in the result-set and much more.
All-new ‘Dashboard’ designer
The new dashboard designer module allows for the creation of dashboards very quickly.
- includes Inter Panel communication by default. Any panel with interactivity will listen to drill down in any of the reports.
- Ability to add image and text component
- Single click option of adding filters. All panels can listen to the filter without any additional effort.
- Additional filter level settings for its position, enable Apply button, etc.
- Additional options like pin, exporting, maximizing, editing, etc.
- Dashboard designer level settings like grid settings, size settings, and various other configurable options
- Apply customizations like header, shadow, background color, border
- Apply advanced options like HTML, CSS, JS etc.
Revamp of File Browser.
The File Browser had undergone a major change on UI design and has been made more user friendly. This includes
- Easy searching.
- Filters type of files.
- Rearrange the view: Change the folder structure into a File-Type structure, and all your files will be shown as per categories or vice-versa. You can also choose the columns you want to see.
- Right-click functionality is also improvised for a better user experience.
- You can now create a new folder and also make it public from the file browser itself.
Revamp of Data-Sources
A few new databases have been added, like Databricks, Athena, etc., and more and more data sources are in the pipeline. Let us know if you need the support of any DB; we can make our product compatible with new data sources within a week.
Further, the whole look and GUI have been revamped as per the new architecture, and it matches the interface and design like other modules.
Revamp of Metadata
UI of metadata has been upgraded to match the current design, i.e., using the latest version of React as well as AntDesign. UX has been improved as well as known bugs have been fixed.
The upcoming GA release (after the snapshot release) will have additional functionality of “In-Memory” and “Cube” support.
- In-memory will allow loading data into local RAM memory, thus giving a very fast performance even with a huge amount of data. You can further specify the frequency of updates of this data.
- In-Memory functionality will also allow cross-database joints, facilitating more than one datasource to be used to create a report at the same time.
- With additional “Cube” approach: Data can be analyzed in various dimensions easily, and slicing and dicing will also become easy. Custom cubes can be created, which will be part of the metadata. In that cube, it is possible to specify the datatype, the calculation, custom calculation, the function which should get applied when that field is used to create a report or when added as a filter, and much more. This will help users to break data down into smaller parts and to examine it from different viewpoints so as to understand it better. In short, biz users can analyze data very quickly.
Admin and User Module
The admin and user module has a completely revamped UX with a seamless interface.
- With version 5.0, we are using Chromium instead of Phantom for export.
- Additional options like preview, toggle sidebar
- Revamped UX of user role management
- Easy application of filters
We are just getting started. Being a major release with a lot of back-end, front-end, and UX-UI changes, this specific release took some time, but rest assured, the subsequent releases will come faster.
We have a very strong product roadmap which includes– A lot of inbuilt additional data sources support
– A lot of new charts and customization options
– Addition of canned report and community report module in this new release
– Support of in-memory (akin extract) and cubes
– NLP-driven method of reports (ask questions to data in the English language, get answers in the form of reports)
– Directly supported advanced statistical and scientific algorithms
– UI-driven workflow method
– Data pipelines
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