SAP Design Studio and Conditions

Posted by on Jun 8, 2013

I got an email this week from a SAP BI developer about an issue with SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio. He is trying to filter a set of data in Top N categories, for example to get the 10 regions with the highest sales numbers (Top 10).

Unfortunately, in Design Studio we can only create filters on characteristics/dimensions (Vendor, Customer, Region) and not on key figures/measures (Sales numbers). In BEx Analyzer and SAP BusinessObjects Analysis the Conditions options does in fact provide this exact functionality, see the screenshot below.


These Conditions can be defined in BEx Analyzer and Analysis, but can also be pre-defined in the BEx Query Designer. Luckily there is a way to use these pre-defined conditions in Design Studio and even change their condition value!

First we’ll have to go to BEx Query Designer and create a Condition in the query. Choose a key figure and an operator.


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Posted in: Knowledge sharing, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio

Getting ready for SAP Design Studio with Codecademy

Posted by on Oct 7, 2012

Word got out that SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio (formerly named as ZEN) will be generally available next month! This week (9 October 2012) SAP is doing a Design Studio 1.0 Product roadmap webinar to explain this early GA and show us the future milestones of this product. If you’re unfamiliar with the whole Design Studio thingy check back at my June post on this subject.

As you can read in that earlier post I needed some JavaScript coding to create a basic interactive filter. Of course this opens up tons of options for developers; just like the possibilities ABAP gives us within SAP BI besides the standard out-of-the-box objects. But, I’m still worried about what this means for the entry level of Design Studio for new developers. Especially if they are used to SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards, which is all about drag and drop and where the only ‘coding’ is done in the Excel spreadsheet.

So it might be a good idea to pick up some basic JavaScript and CSS skills beforehand, to have at least some idea what’s going on in Design Studio scripting. I found this great site called Codecademy which offers free courses in JavaScript, HTML, CSS, Python and Ruby.

A Codecademy course starts of at the very beginning, without prior coding knowledge needed. You will learn a small bit, perform a short exercise in a coding console and the go on to the next bit. At the end of a section you have to combine all the bits in a small project. Forums are directly linked to the exercises so you can easily look for help if you got stuck on a specific exercise. This format also allows you to learn at your own speed and quickly do a few exercises if you have some spare minutes.


So start learning to code at and see if you can get more badges than I got!

Posted in: Knowledge sharing, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio

A first look at ZEN (SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio)

Posted by on Jun 13, 2012

This week we got access to the beta program for one of the new upcoming SAP BI tools: SAP BusinessObjects Analysis Edition for Application Design, codename ZEN. I played around with it for about an hour to get a quick first impression and to see how fast I would be able to create my first ZEN app with some interactivity.

If you haven’t heard about ZEN before you should check the following blogposts:

The user guide gives the following definition of ZEN:

SAP BusinessObjects Analysis, edition for application design enables application designers to create analysis applications and dashboards for browsers and mobile devices on top of BW and SAP HANA data sources. It is the product of choice when full support for BW and HANA data models and engine capabilities is required. The product offers a design tool that allows you to create applications in an easy and intuitive way without the need for native HTML and iPad UI programming skills.

Looking at the SAP BI tools, the features of the current BEx Web Application Designer (WAD) and SAP BusinessObjects Dashboards (Xcelsius) will be merged into this one tool (to rule them all!). Note that ZEN is now in beta, ramp-up is planned for end 2012 and it will be general availability not before the middle of 2013!! So we have enough time to learn about this new tool.

The ZEN software installer required me to install Internet Explorer 9 on my Windows 7 VM. This could lead to some problems in production environments that are using WAD, since WAD only works well with Internet Explorer 8. At one of my current projects we now also have this problem after upgrading from Windows XP to Windows 7 with IE9. Check SAP note 1635870 for more info on this issue.

Setting up the connection to the SAP BW system was easy; just copy-pasting the settings from the SAP logon settings. There is no ‘check connection’ option, so you have to execute the app to check if your settings are correct. Interesting is the option to create multiple SAP BW and SAP HANA connections. Also it seems like you don’t need a live connection to work on an app. In WAD this was required.

The program looks a bit like WAD and Xcelsius, with several components to choose from on the left, a canvas in the middle and on the right the properties of the selected component.

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Posted in: Knowledge sharing, New technology, Preview, SAP, SAP BusinessObjects, SAP BusinessObjects Design Studio, ZEN