The Greek philosopher, Plato, is attributed with first expressing that necessity drives invention, but it was the British who turned it into a proverb.
So, I should not have been surprised when I was walking past Westminster Cathedral in London last week to see a huge Harris Hawk sitting on the arm of a young lady apparently for the use of keeping away the pigeons. It was certainly effective as I didn’t see a single pigeon anywhere. I was told the hawks are also being used in Trafalgar Square, which is infamous for its flocks of pigeons around Nelson’s column. Not only is this a smart way to keep the pigeons away from these monuments, but it is also a lot more humane than poisoning or trapping them.
Later that day, I met with a company implementing a multi-year very large global SAP and BusinessObjects rollout who were a very early adopter of BI 4.0. They encountered numerous challenges in trying to run the different BusinessObjects tools with SAP BW and managed, at one point, to eliminate almost every one of them for one technical reason or another. Rather than just giving up, they worked diligently with the respective SAP product groups to help them fix and improve the different products and slowly were able to reintroduce some of them. They created get around solutions as temporary fixes to issues and helped SAP to create better products.
Their creativity and perseverance not only helped them to move forward with their project but helped many other SAP BW customers looking to move to or implement BusinessObjects BI 4.
A few weeks ago, SAP released BI 4.1 which promises to be more stable than the original BI 4.0 releases and brings a lot of new functionality (thanks, in part, to customers like the one mentioned above). However, this same customer pointed out that SAP appears to have forgotten to include the ability to migrate content from BI 4.0 to BI 4.1 using the Upgrade Management Tool (the content migration tool for BI 4). As a result, BI 4.0 customers are being advised by SAP to use the Life Cycle Management (LCM) tool to migrate their content. Since LCM was not designed for this specific purpose and has more limited migration functionality, this could cause challenges and frustration. I liken it to using a hammer on a screw although the customer gave a far more colorful description!
But all is not lost because the 360Plus tool allows you to easily migrate content between repositories with both bulk actions and visual drag and drop capabilities and will save the day for many a frustrated BI 4.0 customer. In addition, 360Plus enables you to logically compare versions of objects in the CMS so that you can immediately identify any differences. Best of all, 360Plus provides automated scheduling of logical backup and recovery of any objects in the CMS – something that was possible using the Import Wizard in BO XI 3.1 but is no longer delivered with BI 4.
Necessity continues to be the mother of invention.