BI-NSIGHT – Power BI (Publisher for Excel Public, New Visuals) – SQL Server 2016 (Temporal Tables)

It would appear this week that there is not a lot of news in the BI world. Which is a welcome change. I have no doubt that by the time I am finished this blog post or wake up tomorrow morning there will be some updates!

Power BI – Publisher for Excel Public

It would appear that I started this blog post just in time.

And it now appears that you can now install an add-in for Excel, and then tale your table, Pivot Table, chart or any Excel element and pin it directly to a dashboard in Power BI.

You can find more details here: Cloud Platform Release Announcements for January 13, 2016

Power BI – New Visuals

This is the first of two visuals that you can now get for Power BI.

I do think that this first one is really useful as it often is very handy to see a breakdown on how your data is as it goes through the different stages.

Next is the Percentile Chart, which is also a great visualization to have for specific questions or data that you want to visualize. And can often very quickly show where the drop off is, or the uptake!

You can find these visualizations as well as all the Power BI Visualizations here: Power BI Visuals

SQL Server 2016 – Temporal

This is a new addition to SQL Server 2016 which is most welcome.

I already have a server installed with SQL Server 2016 CTP 3.2 so I quickly read the blog post and got straight into the details. And tested it out based on the blog post.

I have to admit that it was really simple and almost effortless to enable the temporal support for the related tables. Either doing it with a totally new table or an existing table.

And then to query the data across both tables was once again super easy. I have to say hats off to the guys at Microsoft for making something that in the past especially in data warehousing has been so complex to implement and manage that now it will be really easy and simple.

I also honestly think that the performance impact will be so small that it will not have a direct impact on performance.

What this does mean is that going forward we will simply just have to query the data, and by default it will be slowly changing.

I also see the opportunity for doing snapshots of the data at a point in time, which if I understand it correctly could mean that potentially there will no longer be a requirement to snapshot the database every day. (Well as long as you have enabled Temporal support on your related tables that are involved in the snapshot.)

You can find out about the details here: Effortlessly Analyze Data History Using Temporal Tables

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