Google style search on your Xcelsius dashboard

Dashboard designers have long been concerned with design and usability, concepts typically foreign to IT development. Leveraging all types of selectors in the forms of combo boxes, list selectors, radio buttons and check boxes, they try to make information finding easier and simpler. Well, if you are looking for a way to let your dashboard users find something, why not let them simply search for it… Following these simple few steps, you can easily add “google style search” functionality on your SAP BusinessObjects Xcelsius dashboard to allow users to quickly find what they are looking for in your structured data. This example, uses the eFashion sample database and universe that ships with BusinessObjects. 

First, create a webi report that you will later connect your Xcelsius dashboard to using LiveOffice connection. The webi report should contain the data needed for your dashboard. The report query, should have an optional prompt filter for each column you would like to be able to search for. All the optional prompts must have the SAME NAME. Web Intelligence will consolidate all prompts with the same name and apply the same value entered on them to each of the criteria filters. So, the where clause generated will look something like: where search_column_1 like @Search_Prompt or search_column_2 like @Search_Prompt or search_column_3 like @Search_Prompt etc… 



Note, for this example, the Zip Code universe object was converted to a String type using Cstr(Outlet_Lookup.Zip_code) 



After creating your webi report block, insert it into excel using Live Office. Refresh the report block in LO and bound the report prompt to a cell in your excel sheet. Replace the prompt value in the bound cell with a formula that will enclose your user input in Xcelsius within two wilchar characters (%value%). Note, you can also upper case your search results this way to eliminate case issues in your case sensitive database. 



Finally, import the excel spreadsheet into Xcelsius. Complete the setup by setting up the live office connection and refresh options, layout your components, and there you go. Google style search functionality in your dashboard. You can download an example xlf HERE 

Search for store manager Steve


Search for zip codes that contain 96

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