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Learning TM1 through Cognos Express

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发表于 2014-3-16 06:14:33 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
Hello Everybody,

First of all my involvement with cognos product line is extremely limited and I am terribly confused.

See, I decided to learn TM1 and started searching about it but soon enough I figured it out that there is not a TM1 trial installation. However i saw the forums that they were saying Cognos Express has TM1 in it. Then I downloaded Cognos Express and install it but I am still confused about how I am going to learn TM1 from it.

When I look at the TM1 developers guide it has some modules which mostly not included in Cognos Express.

So can please some one explain me how i can learn TM1 through Cognos Express? By the way I already have the knowledge of general concepts of multidimensional modelling.

I am coming from Microsoft product line and your assistance will help me convert to Cognos

Thanks already,
Ata
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发表于 2014-3-16 08:54:33 | 显示全部楼层
acelebi wrote:I am coming from Microsoft product line and your assistance will help me convert to Cognos

Ah. Unfortunately I think that this helps explain your confusion.

In the MS world, the word "Express" is used to describe a free version of a product, with cut down features relative to the "standard" edition. For example Outlook Express (if that's still around), SQL Server Express, Visual Studio Express and so on. They're a cheap way to get into the tool and learn it (you can't get much cheaper than "free"), though you can only learn the cut down features that are provided. But on the other hand, that's an awful lot of them. SQL Server Express, for instance, has most of the core functionality of the SQL Server database engine, though it can't handle the kind of humongous databases that Standard and Enterprise can handle. It's actually a smart move on MS's part to do that; it increases market penetration and the number of people who are likely to be advocates for the technology.

IBM doesn't see the world in those terms, and Cognos Express isn't remotely like those MS "Express" products. What it is is this;
- TM1 is a generic back end calculation engine from which you can create a data model using a formula language called Rules, and an ETL tool called TurboIntegrator amongst other things. You have a wide range of front ends that can tie to it including:
-- The classic interface via an Excel add-in;
-- A web server called TM1 Web;
-- Third party applications which are also often web based;
-- Applications that you write yourself using one of TM1's APIs;
-- The Java-based abominations that were foisted onto us in version 10.1 and which make the design of Rome II Total War look good by comparison, although they're both dumbed down by roughly equal amounts and are therefore equally infuriating to use; and, wait for it...
-- Cognos BI reporting tools.

Now it's possible to buy and run TM1 and Cognos BI reporting separately though increasingly IBM is trying to bundle them. However they are far from cheap. So very far from cheap that it ain't funny. Mid market companies don't necessarily need all of the features that you can get from Cognos' full BI enterprise suite, so you have the option of getting Cognos Express. Which is also not cheap (and sure as h3ll not free), but it's a relative thing. Where Cognos Express sits in relation to other Cognos BI offerings is outlined on  page, which will hopefully still be a live link by the time you read this. (Or possibly not, given the way IBM runs its web site.)

Cognos Express does have a full TM1 server behind it, though there are some restrictions on how you can use it. So in theory, it would be possible to learn the core TM1 server from a CX installation. However I don't know where you downloaded Cognos Express from; it does have (last time I looked) an evaluation version, but it stops working after 30 days (again last time I looked). I'm surprised they gave it to you, though, as I thought that they restricted it to businesses. But that's neither here nor there if you've got it. So you'd need to learn fast, but in reality I can't see any way you could get on top of it in 30 days. If you want to have a crack, though, just download all of the CX manuals and start reading, fast. Anything that refer's to the back end data engine, well, that's likely to be TM1 that they're talking about.

Alternatively you might want to take a look at some of the TM1 courses on offer, though I warn you that they generally aren't cheap.

However generally the best way of learning TM1 is to get a gig at a site which uses it, given the lack of a free, light version that would encourage people to spread the word about it. But I'm sure that IBM's marketing department is far wiser on that point than I am.  

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