We are using Cognos 8 Analysis Studio to host a cube of financial data. The cube gives end users information on their finger tips to design their ad-hoc reports and or analysis. While its undoubtedly an amazing tool, we have come across some limitations which may bring down its popularity.
Issue 1: Search Feature
Description – Search, by default does not apply following options (View attached image):
i) “Contains the keyword”
ii) “Search All Details”
iii) “Case Insensitive”
Because of which every time user search an item they have to check all the above options and then start a search. It would make more sense to have the search features as universal as MS World.
Issue 2: Suppression option for calculated columns / rows
Description – Suppression does not work on calculated columns / rows
It is currently one of the most desired features (missing) in Cognos Analysis Studio.
Issue 3: Column Resize
Description – Not able to fix the column size in work area.
Issue 4: Shuffling Column / Row in work area
Description – Position of a row or column cannot be changed once dragged to work area. It can only be deleted and reinserted at the end.
To change a column or row position, users will have to delete and re-drag the columns / rows in desired order.
Issue 5: Inserting a row / column in between existing column / rows
Description – A new row or column cannot be inserted in between existing crows or column once dragged to work area. It can only be added to the end.
To insert a new row or column, users will have to delete and re-drag the columns / rows in desired order.
Rational DOORS (former Telelogic DOORS) claims that it links requirements to test plans and test cases for easy and powerful tractability. Well, I don’t fully agree to that statement. After working with both DOORS and QC, I have realized that it’s easier said than done. What am I talking about??? Read few more lines and you’ll know You may be using all sorts of features provided by DOORS to write COMPREHENSIVE requirements. Most commonly used features would be – Using tables, inserting images and inserting OLE objects like – word / excel. Everything goes well if the features are used within DOORS (though they have their own limitations).
The real issue comes when you try to integrate your requirements with Quality Center. Following items are not exportable to Quality Center:
- DOORS Tables
- Word / Excel documents
- any other attachment.
This creates a gap in requirements for the person writing test cases out of Quality Center. He needs to always rely on DOORS requirement instead of Quality Center.
I hope things get better in future making TRAs and QC resources life easy. Amen!
I used to work as a technical requirement analyst in one of my previous companies. Part of the responsibilities was to develop and document technical specifications for Cognos8 Reports. When I started there were we no standards or templates for documenting report requirements. I always felt a need for one. Over the period of time I created a template to document the requirements in a manner that they are clear, complete, unambiguous and easily maintainable. The template can also be tailored based on project needs. Proven successful!
Standard Reporting Requirements Template
1 Report Title
1.1 Report Type
<Stand Alone / Drill Thru etc.>
1.2 Report Identifier
<May be used for report database or version control>
1.3 Report Description
1.4 Business Owner
1.5 Business objective
1.6.1 Who runs the report
1.6.2 When run
1.6.3 Activity that triggers run of report
1.6.4 Distribution Method
1.6.5 Use Restrictions
1.6.6 Data timeliness/latency
1.6.7 Business criticality/impact of non-availability
1.6.8 Business Users
1.7 Cognos Requirements
1.7.1 Cognos Model/Package Name
1.7.2 Update to package
188.8.131.52 Dimension: <Dimension detail – where to add / update the data items>
184.108.40.206.1 Item Details – TABLE
||Location in Package
||DB Column Name
|<Add / Update>
1.7.3 Framework Modeling – TABLE
|<Add / Update>
||<Table / View / Join>
1.8 Report Requirements
1.8.1 Cognos Template
<if a template exist>
1.8.2 Report Location
1.8.3 Report Name
220.127.116.11 Report name – saved at server
18.104.22.168 Report name – shown to users
1.8.4 Default Filter
<Filter apply to whole / all pages of the report>
1.8.5 User Specified Filter(s) / Parameter – TABLE
||Selection (Single or Multiple)
||Implementation(List Box / Drop Down / Check Box etc.)
||Data Source – (User / Entry or Package item info including package name, hierarchy and item name)
1.8.6 Prompt Page Mockup
1.8.7 Number of report pages (Report Studio report pages)
1.8.8 Report pages display items – Common for all report pages – TABLE
||Data Source – Package Folder / Dimension Or User entry
||Data Source – Package Item
||DB info – Schema, Table and Column name
||Logic / Calculation
1.8.9 Report Requirements – Page-1
22.214.171.124 Mockup – Page -1
126.96.36.199 Report result items – Page -1
188.8.131.52 Report Query – Page -1
<SQL if available to help Develper ans Testers>
1.8.10 Repeat for all pages
1.9 Functional Requirements
1.9.1 Steps to run report
184.108.40.206 Basic Flow
220.127.116.11 Alternate Flow
1.9.2 Scheduling Requirement
<if report is going to run on a schedule basis. Define the requirements here.>
1.9.3 Physical Format
<Default output and other required output formats>
1.10 Non-functional requirements