This is a fully functioning connected HTML5 version of an SAP dashboard that connects to the eFashion universe on State change and refreshes the data. Yes. You are not reading this wrong. No plugins used, no third party tools or tricks, just SAP dashboard XLF file. Read on to learn more…
Ever since I read Joseph Warbington SCN post about finding SAP Dashboard html5 source files when previewing a dashboard for Mobile, I’ve been intrigued with the possibilities this opened up.
So, during the SAPPHIRE conference, I managed to find an SAP employee on the show floor who was a member of the Dashboard product team. “Can you please tell me when will SAP make the option to export dashboards outside the mobile App available?” I asked. “Well, never… there is no such plan and dashboard relies on the platform for certain things, so we will not make such functionality available…”. Hmmm… Really. Well, this conversation left me a bit disappointed (and by the way, I have no idea if this is the official SAP stance, this was just one side conversation, with one person who works at SAP, who may or may not know the entire product road map). So, after I got home, I decided to try and replicate the full dashboard functionality in HTML5 outside the BI app.
As Joseph Warbington describes, harvesting the HTML5 source files is relatively simple, and it all works just fine, except for one important piece. Connections… Since SP5, we can use the Query Browser to embed connectivity in the mobile dashboards, and quite frankly, without connectivity, I don’t really see much enterprise use in the dashboard. And of course, when trying to get the connections to “just work” after copying the HTML5 files from the Temp directory does not work.
So, armed with chrome network debugger, fiddler, a good understanding of the various BO SDKs (the web services and enterprise ones in particular) and with the invaluable help of my colleague, Yevgeniy (Eugene) Tsvetov, we set out to understand how Dashboard invokes connections and what we would need to get the connections to work outside the BI APP. The result is displayed at the top of this post.
The files generated by SAP dashboard already contain all the scaffolding needed for the connections to work, the only thing that is really missing is the enterprise session. So, by adding a few lines of JS to the files generated, we can pass the session using the enterprise and web services SDK. And REST assured, it all works!
This opens up the possibility for Dashboard designers to post their fully connected awesome designs not just to the BI App, but also to any web site, without needing to use flash!!! Enjoy…