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Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

Have any of you attempted to import or access metadata from an outside repository and display it by launching access to it from within Impromptu and/ or Powerplay. I understand that this can be accomplished through a macro within Impromptu, but Powerplay has no such capability. Is there a way to import metadata into Powerplay, for instance, through an API?

RE: Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

Dear WHArchitect,
I don't have any experience in Impromptu or Powerplay. I work for County Government in the IS Dept. Yesterday I attended a demo for these products. They also gave us demo packages to try. I was wondering if you could give me your critique of these products. We are presently using Crystal Reports and thinking of replacing with Cognos products. The main problem we have with CR7.0 is the fact that several .dll files need to be a certain version or CR7.0 won't work. If I set the version so that CR7.0 will work then other software packages I have will not work.
Thanks for any info you can give me. You can e-mail me at



RE: Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

Of all the players in the OLAP market, none has been there longer than Cognos. This is a product line that began as a desktop suite and eventually metamorphosed into the client/server world. There is no more easy to use suite of end user reporting products. It is largely for this reason that they own the lion's share of the OLAP market. They have recently improved the functionality of the Cognos suite by adding web publishing tools that incorporate drill down capability. Very sexy.

In the past, the Cognos suite, PowerPlay in particular, has suffered from scaleability problems. The recent move to a "three tier architecture" has alleviated some of the more serious problems. In the old, two tier model, the OLAP engine resided on the client workstation. This arrangement forced the entire database through the network for each OLAP query. It doesn't take very many concurrent users to eat up the available band width in a situation like that. By moving the OLAP engine to a web server, Cognos reduced the amount of network traffic dramatically. The story doesn't stop here, though.

The basic design of the multidimensional database, the "PowerCube" under PowerPlay, and the associated OLAP engine, hasn't changed since the desktop days. All facts are stored at the most granular level and aggregated as needed at query time. This tends to put a practical limit on data volume and the number of dimensions that can be incorporated into the design without significantly affecting performance. Workarounds exist to help in some of these situations, and I have found Cognos very responsive when it comes to providing consultants and other technical support to help overcome the performance problems that do occur. More often than not, however, the cure involves sacrificing detail for performance.

I can sympathize with your CR woes. Their suite has a history similar to the Cognos suite, and their products have been around almost as long. The problem you describe, however, sounds like it can be cured by being more careful about how you distribute the software. I suspect that problem will go away if you tighten up your software distribution procedures.

RE: Metadata within Impromptu, Powerplay

I don't use cognos, but tried out SAS products.
I attended a demo on Hummingbird products, BI Suite.
in the demo the main what was given out to understand is whatever u can do in Cognos can be con very easily by BI.
Have u ever tried out BI?

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