Dan English's BI Blog

Welcome to my random thoughts in regards to Business Intelligence, databases, and other technologies

Posts Tagged ‘msbimn’

MN PASS Microsoft BI User Group Meeting – Feb 22

Posted by denglishbi on February 9, 2016

The next MN Microsoft BI User Group meeting is coming up in a couple of weeks on Monday, February 22.  We will have two topics, one on the upcoming release of SQL Server 2016 (which CTP 3.3 was just released) and the other on Power BI (all of the new content since I last spoke on it last year – which is a lot of content).

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)
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MN Microsoft BI User Group Feb 2016 Meeting

Sponsored by:

image[12]MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Monday, February 22, 2016

Check In: 12:45 PM Event Time: 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 12:45-1:00 : Check-In
  • 1:00-1:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates and Announcements
  • 1:15-2:15 : SQL Server 2016
  • 2:15-2:30 : Break
  • 2:30-3:30 : Getting the new year started with Microsoft Power BI!
  • 3:30-5:00 : Networking and Pizza

Presentations:

Session 1: SQL Server 2016

Microsoft is continuing to invest heavily in BI and Analytics with SQL Server 2016. Reporting Services and Analysis Services are receiving major enhancements and will deliver modern and mobile reporting as well as powerful modeling capabilities. SQL 2016 also brings new advanced analytic capabilities with R Services and enables hybrid BI scenarios to benefit from existing on-premises investments. In this sessions we’ll go over the new BI features of SQL 2016 and talk about the future of BI in SQL Server.

Speaker: Will Weber

Will Weber is a Data Platform Solution Architect with Microsoft. He’s been an active participant in the SQL community in the Twin Cities for a number of years and looks forward to continuing that work in the future. And if the PowerBall gets back up to $1.5 billion he’ll definitely consider buying a ticket.

Session 2: Getting the new year started with Microsoft Power BI!

In this session we will take a look at the changes that Microsoft has released for the Power BI Service, Power BI Desktop, and Power BI Mobile Apps. Microsoft continues to release updates to Power BI on a weekly and monthly basis. Some of the changes since we last met include items such as Custom Visualizations, Full Screen Mode, Pop-Out for Visualizations, Printing, Export Data, QR Codes, Excel Add-In, Widgets, R Visuals Integration, Improved Image Support, and much, much more. Come and check out all of the latest capabilities of Power BI and be amazed!

Speaker: Dan English

Dan is the Senior Data Warehouse Architect at Constellation, Inc. He is also a Microsoft Data Platform MVP, author, technical editor, and community leader. He has been developing with Microsoft technologies for over 15 years, and over 10 years with Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence. He has been working with SQO Server since version 6.5 through 2014 and is exploring 2016. Dan has videos on Vimeo, is an avid blogger, and tweets. Dan is the chapter leader for the PASS Business Analytics VC and on the executive leadership team for the MN Microsoft BI User Group.

Planning on attending the Data Insights Summit or the PASS BA Conference?  If so, make sure to associate yourself with our user group.

Data Insights Summit – Our 3-digit Power BI User Group (PUG) code is 102.

PASS BA Conference – Use the following code to save $100 off registration USMO03

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MN PASS Microsoft BI User Group Q4 2015 Meeting – Dec 16

Posted by denglishbi on November 25, 2015

We are pleased to announced the next MN Microsoft BI User Group on Wednesday, December 16.  We have two presentations this quarter, one on HDInsight and Power BI and the other on Azure Machine Learning. Please register ahead of time and make sure to bring a photo id to get into the meeting. We are also pleased to announce that we are one of the initial user groups to also be recognized as an official Microsoft Power BI user group!

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)
image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2015 Q4 Meeting

Sponsored by:

image[12]MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Check In: 2:45 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:
  • 2:45-3:00 : Check-In
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates and Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Powering Up HDInsight with Power BI
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Rise of the Machine (Learning)
  • 5:30-6:00 : Networking and Pizza
Presentations:
Session 1: Powering Up HDInsight with Power BI

Join Steve Hughes as he walks through two techniques for working with data in HDInsight. In the first example, he will use Power Query to interact with the files in HDInsight. In the second example, he will use Power BI Desktop and Hive to work with the same data. Throughout the session, he will highlight some of the features within Power BI that can be used to explore data stored using Hadoop on HDInsight.

Speaker: Steve Hughes

Steve is a Principal Consultant at Pragmatic Works. He is currently responsible for guiding the Principal Consultant team and working with other areas in the organization to build out their data and analytics offerings. His area of expertise is in data and business intelligence architecture on the Microsoft SQL Server platform. He was also the data architect for a SaaS company which delivered a transportation management solution for fleets across the United States. Steve has co-authored three books and delivered many presentations on SQL Server and data architecture over the past six years. He also provides insights from the field on his blog at http://www.dataonwheels.com.

Session 2: Rise of the Machine (Learning) – Azure ML in BI, in Apps, and as a product in Azure Marketplace

Machine Learning no longer requires expensive infrastructures and knowledge of specialized statistical coding languages. Azure ML lowers the barriers of entry for predictive analytics using Machine Learning.

In this session, review the similarities and differences of Machine Learning compared to traditional Predictive Analytics, Data Mining, Data Science, and Artificial Intelligence. Learn how to integrate predictive analytics into your existing analytics and reporting strategy and infrastructure. Greg will demonstrate how a BI solution using only Excel with Power Pivot can connect to an Azure ML Model in the cloud for predictions and perform analysis with Power BI.

Learn how Azure ML can be used to add value to Apps. Also, review ways to turn your Azure ML Model into a source of revenue using Azure Marketplace. Machine Learning is now quietly rising all around us as it integrates with technology, improves processes and workflows, and transforms how data drives business. Empower your organization with new competitive advantages using Azure ML.

Speaker: Greg Beaumont

Greg is currently the Data Science Practice Lead at GNet Group, where he provides consulting services using Microsoft technologies. His industry vertical experience includes healthcare, manufacturing, logistics, retail and public/government data. Greg has been working in Analytics since 2007, and enjoys designing and building specialized solutions using tools and methodologies such as Six Sigma, Healthcare Performance Measures, Price Analytics and Predictive Analytics. He frequently writes blogs on use of analytics and visualizations http://blog.gnetgroup.com

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MN PASS Microsoft BI User Group Q3 2015 Meeting – Sept 18

Posted by denglishbi on September 8, 2015

We are pleased to announced the next MN Microsoft BI User Group on Friday, September 18.  We are honored to have Kamal Hathi, the Director of Program Management of Business Intelligence at Microsoft, travel to MN to do a keynote presentation on Power BI. Please register ahead of time and make sure to bring a photo id to get into the meeting.

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)
image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2015 Q3 Meeting

Sponsored by:

image[12]MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Friday, September 18, 2015

Check In: 8:30 AM Event Time: 9:00 AM – 11:30 AM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 8:30-9:00 : Registration and Welcome Reception
  • 9:00-10:30 : Power BI Keynote Presentation
  • 10:30-11:00 : Q & A
  • 11:00-11:30 : Prize drawing and Networking

Presentation:

Session: Power BI Keynote Presentation

With Microsoft Power BI generally available, we are excited to bring it to you. It doesn’t matter if you’re already familiar or new with Power BI. Kamal will share how powerful and simple it is to connect to and visualize your data.

Connect to fellow data professionals, hear first-hand from Power BI product team about what you can do with Power BI and where it’s headed. It doesn’t matter if your data is in the cloud or on-premises: Power BI can help you make sense of it.

Speaker: Kamal Hathi

Kamal is the Director of Program Management, Business Intelligence at Microsoft. Kamal manages the overall strategy, design and delivery of Microsoft business intelligence technologies. Microsoft delivers an innovative set of tools and services for data visualization and analytics that help organizations worldwide gain insights on data at all scales.

Since joining Microsoft in 1996, Hathi has served in engineering management roles in various product groups. He has 20 years of experience in data analysis and visualization and was one of the founding members of Microsoft’s business intelligence efforts. Before working with Microsoft, Hathi’s diverse work history included experience in research and consulting. He has a graduate degree in engineering from Case Western Reserve University.

PASS Summit Conference 2015 Discount Code – save $150 – LC15FML4

Members of the PASS Chapter, Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group can save $150 off their

PASS Summit 2015 registration by using the unique Chapter discount code: LC15FML4

http://sqlpass.org/summit/2015/RegisterNow.aspx

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MN Microsoft BI User Group Special Edition Meeting–June 10

Posted by denglishbi on June 9, 2015

We are pleased to announce that there will be a Special Edition meeting tomorrow on June 10.  Devin Knight from Pragmatic Works is in town and he will be presenting on SSIS tomorrow night for our user group. Please register ahead of time and make sure to bring a photo id to get into the meeting.

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)
image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2015 Special Edition Meeting

Sponsored by:

image

Date: Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Check In: 5:00 PM Event Time: 5:30 PM – 7:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 5:00-5:30 : Registration, Announcements, Hospitality and Networking
  • 5:30-6:45 : Adapting your SSIS Solutions to use the Project Deployment Model
  • 6:45-7:00 : Prize giveaways sponsored by Pragmatic Works

Presentations:

Session: Adapting your SSIS Solutions to use the Project Deployment Model

SSIS in SQL Server 2012 had a significant overhaul to its architecture and it is important to understand how these changes can make your development life easier. These changes impact how you deploy, configure and manage SSIS packages. This session will guide you through how to integrate the features that come with the Project Deployment Model in SSIS into your solution as well as how you can upgrade existing solutions to use the new model.

Speaker: Devin Knight

Devin is the Training Director for Pragmatic Works. He is a Microsoft SQL Server MVP, an author of five SQL Server books and leads his local user group in Jacksonville (JSSUG).

PASS Summit Conference 2015 Discount Code – save $150 – LC15FML4

Members of the PASS Chapter, Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group can save $150 off their

PASS Summit 2015 registration by using the unique Chapter discount code: LC15FML4

http://sqlpass.org/summit/2015/RegisterNow.aspx

Posted in Training | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

MN PASS BI User Group Q2 2015 Meeting – June 2

Posted by denglishbi on May 29, 2015

The next meeting for the Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group is next Tuesday, June 2.  This meeting will have two presentations, the first one is on the new Power BI Preview and the second one is on Datazen.  Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.

*There will be a HP Stream 7 tablet given away during the networking session!
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MN Microsoft BI User Group 2015 Q2 Meeting

Sponsored by:

image[12]MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Check In: 2:45 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:
  • 2:45-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : The “New” Power BI Service Walkthrough
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Achieving Enlightenment with Datazen. Anywhere!
  • 5:30-6:00 : Eval Collection, Prizes, Networking, and Pizza

*There will be a HP Stream 7 tablet given away during the networking session!

Presentations:
Session 1: The “New” Power BI Service Walkthrough

In this session, we will discuss the changes that are coming to Power BI and the new features that are provided with the Power BI Designer as Microsoft continues its roadmap with self-service BI. If you haven’t seen this yet, Power BI features are now available in a standalone application outside of Excel! You will see with the new designer that you will be able to easily integrate data, create stunning and interactive visualizations, and even create cloud based Power BI dashboards to share and it is even Free!! In this session we will also cover the mobile side of Power BI looking at the new Power BI apps for both Windows and iOS.

Speaker: Dan English

Dan English is the BI Practice Manager at Superior Consulting Service and is a SQL Server MVP, co-author, and technical editor. He has been developing with Microsoft technologies for over 15 years, and over 8 years with Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence. He has been working with SQL Server since version 6.5 through 2014 and is getting ready to explore 2016. Dan has screencasts and videos on Vimeo, is an avid blogger, and tweets. Dan is on the executive leadership team for the MN Microsoft BI user group and the chapter leader for the PASS Business Analytics Virtual Chapter.

Session 2: Achieving Enlightenment with Datazen. Anywhere!

In this session we will examine the capabilities offered by Datazen, one of Microsoft’s latest acquisitions. Datazen allows you to present a highly customizable unified view of data across the enterprise. We will look at the authoring experience and integration with data sources ranging from ad hoc Excel reports to SQL Server and SSAS cubes.

The best part of it all? You can take everything with you. With native apps on Android, iOS, and Windows 8 and HTML5 rendering, your data is available anywhere, anytime.

Speaker: Greg Baldini

Greg Baldini is a BI Analyst with GNet Group. He is an experienced BI professional who has executed multiple projects delivering Enterprise BI and data warehouse solutions using the Microsoft BI Stack, which includes SSIS, SQL Server, Analysis Services, Power Pivot, Reporting Services, SharePoint, Power BI and Datazen. An expert in creating Agile BI solutions using PowerPivot/Tabular/ DAX. His experience spans verticals such as – manufacturing, healthcare, fraud analysis, marketing pipelines, and sales performance.

PASS Summit Conference 2015 Discount Code – save $150 – LC15FML4

Members of the PASS Chapter, Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group can save $150 off their

PASS Summit 2015 registration by using the unique Chapter discount code: LC15FML4

http://sqlpass.org/summit/2015/RegisterNow.aspx

Analytics with Power BI Workshop – 6/9,10 (Discount Code)

Pragmatic Works has created a discount code that will give users 25% off their workshop purchase. This code is valid until May 31, 2015
Discount Code: WSDISCOUNT

http://pragmaticworks.com/Training/Workshops/Business-Analytics/Schedule/6-9-2015_MinneapolisAnalyticswithPowerBIWorkshop

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MN PASS BI User Group Q1 2015 Meeting – March 3

Posted by denglishbi on February 12, 2015

The first meeting of the 2015 year is coming up in a couple of weeks on Tuesday, March 3 for the MN Microsoft BI User Group.  This meeting will have two presentations, the first one is a healthcare case study and the second one is on Power Query.  Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.


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MN Microsoft BI User Group 2015 Q1 Meeting

Sponsored by:

image[12]MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Check In: 2:45 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 2:45-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Healthcare Case Study: DW and BI
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Power Query: Data Chemistry for the Masses
  • 5:30-6:00 : Eval Collection, Prizes, Networking, and Pizza

Presentations:

Session 1: Healthcare Case Study: DW and BI

Implementing and enhancing a vendor supplied Data Warehouse and Business Intelligence solution in Healthcare is a significant undertaking. Join Ann Warner and Ross McNeely as they discuss the benefits of launching a vendor supplied solution, and the challenges in expanding the data model to meet the needs at HealthEast Care System. As an Accountable Care Organization (ACO) HealthEast required a new platform to support new analytics across current and legacy systems. We will breakdown how dashboards were developed to help drive down duplicate patient records using Microsoft’s MDS and Power BI. Analyzing health systems and payers will give hospitals and clinics insight into care quality, cost accountability, and patient loyalty.

Speaker: Ann Warner and Ross McNeely

Ann Warner is the Data Engineering and Application Manager at HealthEast Care System.  As the Manager of the Data Engineering team, Ann is responsible for building and managing the team for Data Governance, Operational Data Store, and Epic’s Cogito Data Warehouse.  Ann has experience creating and staffing data warehouse development efforts for higher education, finance, banking, credit card risk, manufacturing, logistics, sales, and marketing.

Ross McNeely is a Principle Consultant and the BI Practice Manager at Tail Wind. Ross has presented at DAMA-MN, SQLSaturday, PASSMN, Microsoft BI User Group MN, and ERworld 2012. Ross adds real-world examples from various industries in his presentations. Regardless if you have a beginner, intermediate, or advanced skill set, Ross will provide a solid foundation for each topic he presents.

Session 2: Power Query: Data Chemistry for the Masses

ETL Developers have being doing chemistry with data for years in tools like SQL Server Integration Services. These tools require training, experience, and time that few business users have. But in the age of self-service BI, those business users need a way to shape data to support their analysis.
This session will show how Power Query can be easily used to take advantage of data’s properties to drive the change we need to support our goals.
We will discuss/demonstrate:

  • The simple process of accessing a wide variety of data sources
  • The ease with which simple transformations can be achieved using the Power Query Ribbon
  • Power Query’s fantastic ability to travel through time to see every step taken with the data
  • The foundations of the Power Query Formula Language, informally known as "M"
  • Using "M" to take Power Query WAY beyond what the Ribbon has to offer.

Come learn about what may well be the most exciting member of the Power BI family.

Speaker: Mark Vaillancourt

Mark Vaillancourt is a SQL Server MVP and a Business Intelligence Enterprise Consultant for Digineer, a Microsoft partner based in Plymouth, MN. He has been working with SQL Server since 2007 and holds the MCITP – Business Intelligence Developer 2008 certification. With a background in Theater and Improvised Comedy, Mark makes sure that his presentations are both informative and fun.

PASS Business Analytics Conference 2015 Discount Code – save $150 – USMO03

Save $150 on your registration to PASS Business Analytics Conference, April 21-22 in Santa Clara, CA, using our chapter’s discount code: USMO03. Feel free to share this discount code with friends or colleagues!
http://passbaconference.com/2015/Home.aspx

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q4 Meeting–Dec 2

Posted by denglishbi on November 25, 2014

The fourth quarter and final meeting of the year is coming up next week for the MN Microsoft BI User Group.  This meeting will have two presentations, the first one on Azure Machine Learning and the second one is a case study on monitoring Analysis Services usage.  Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.


image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q4 Meeting

Sponsored by:

MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Tuesday, December 2, 2014image

Check In: 2:30 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 2:30-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Predictive Analytics for the Masses: Azure ML
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Case Study: Monitoring SSAS Usage with Extended Events
  • 5:30-6:00 : Happy Hour at Pinstripes – Meeting will adjourn with a special networking opportunity hosted by Slalom Consulting. Join everyone at Pinstripes Edina at 3849 Gallagher Drive for refreshments, fun and networking.

Presentations:

Session 1: Predictive Analytics for the Masses: Azure ML

Predictive Analytics generally has the strongest ROI attached to it, but is unfortunately usually one of the last analytical capabilities on the modern enterprise’s Analytical Roadmap. Part of this is due to the fact that predicting the future generally requires some foundational data pieces and tools to be in place. The advent of the Cloud has disrupted many commonly held historical approaches as it can greatly reduce the time to market for the foundational pieces.

The Machine Learning product will be reviewed and a demonstration of the ML set-up and “how to” model 1-3 scenarios will also be covered.

Speaker: Joe Berg and Matthew Lawrence

Joe Berg is a Managing Director with Slalom Consulting and is responsible for the National Information Management & Analytics (IM&A). Joe has spent over 8 years working on business intelligence and data warehouse platforms as a consultant for Microsoft. In addition to his implementation and leadership roles on these projects, Joe has led a variety of successful engagements helping some of the worlds largest organizations develop a world-class Business Intelligence and Analytics capability.

Matthew Lawrence is an accomplished analytics professional with vast experience across many Fortune 500 companies using predictive and descriptive modeling skills in a variety of technical environments to solve a host of business problems. He has led successful analytics engagements from vision to implementation across technology platforms in a variety of data environments. He is skilled at asking the questions to get to the heart of the matter to uncover relationships that lead to actionable insight.

Session 2: Case Study: Monitoring SSAS Usage with Extended Events

How do you measure the success of a Self Service Business Intelligence initiative? While the answer to that question has several components, a vital one is Adoption. Are people using the assets created for that initiative? Since Business Intelligence is using data to make better decisions, why not use data to help answer this question? At Capella University, we did just that.

This case study will describe how we used Analysis Services Extended Events to track the usage of Tabular Models that Capella built for Self Service BI users. We will demonstrate the following:

  • The business case for capturing asset usage
  • The particular goals Capella had in this case
  • How easy it is to get started with SSAS Extended Events (far easier than it looks)
  • The end-to-end solution created: from the event trace itself thru to the Power Pivot model created for analysis
  • Lessons learned (some learned the hard way)

We hope you will come away from this presentation with less trepidation around SSAS Extended Events as well as a foundation you can use for your own solution.

Speakers: Prashant Tolia and Mark Vaillancourt

Prashant Tolia is the Senior Technical Architect for the Information Delivery department at Capella University. He has over 16 years of experience in IT and a passion for Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing. Prashant earned his MBA form Capella and holds certifications as an Oracle DBA and in Cognos BI suite. In his current role, Prashant ensures that all technical solutions are cost effective, appropriate, and adhere to Capella standards and best practices.

Mark Vaillancourt is a SQL Server MVP and a Business Intelligence Enterprise Consultant for Digineer, a Microsoft partner based in Plymouth, MN. He has been working with SQL Server since 2007 and holds the MCITP – Business Intelligence Developer 2008 certification. With a background in Theater and Improvised Comedy, Mark makes sure that his presentations are both informative and fun.

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q3 Meeting–Sept 9

Posted by denglishbi on September 3, 2014

The next MN Microsoft BI user group meeting is coming up next Tuesday on September 9 from 3 to 6.  This meeting will have two presentations, the first one on forward looking dashboards & KPIs and the second on is a case study on monitoring Analysis Services usage.  Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q3 Meeting

Sponsored by:

MSFT_logo_Page

Date: Tuesday, September 9, 2014image

Check In: 2:30 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 2:30-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Looking Through the Windshield: Creating Forward-Looking Dashboards and KPIs
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Case Study: Monitoring SSAS Usage with Extended Events
  • 5:30-6:00 : Social and Networking

Presentations:

Session 1: Looking Through the Windshield: Creating Forward-Looking Dashboards and KPIs

It is dangerous to drive forward while looking through the rear window. The same is true about guiding our organizations forward while looking only at the past. Yet, much of our business intelligence shows only the past. This session explores simple techniques to make our dashboards and KPIs visualize what is likely in the future. No fancy predictive algorithms are necessary–just an appreciation of what we know about our organization’s future and a recognition of past trends that are likely to continue.

Speaker: Brian Larson

Brian Larson is the Chief Technology Officer at Superior Consulting Services and has presented at SQL Server Connections, the PASS Summit and the Microsoft BI Conference. As a consultant to Microsoft, Brian contributed to the original code base of Reporting Services. Brian is the author of “Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Reporting Service: 4th Edition” and “Delivering Business Intelligence with SQL Server 2012: 3rd Edition” as well as co-author of “Visualizing Data with Microsoft Power View.”

Session 2: Case Study: Monitoring SSAS Usage with Extended Events

How do you measure the success of a Self Service Business Intelligence initiative? While the answer to that question has several components, a vital one is Adoption. Are people using the assets created for that initiative? Since Business Intelligence is using data to make better decisions, why not use data to help answer this question? At Capella University, we did just that.

This case study will describe how we used Analysis Services Extended Events to track the usage of Tabular Models that Capella built for Self Service BI users. We will demonstrate the following:

  • The business case for capturing asset usage
  • The particular goals Capella had in this case
  • How easy it is to get started with SSAS Extended Events (far easier than it looks)
  • The end-to-end solution created: from the event trace itself thru to the Power Pivot model created for analysis
  • Lessons learned (some learned the hard way)

We hope you will come away from this presentation with less trepidation around SSAS Extended Events as well as a foundation you can use for your own solution.

Speakers: Prashant Tolia and Mark Vaillancourt

Prashant Tolia is the Senior Technical Architect for the Information Delivery department at Capella University. He has over 16 years of experience in IT and a passion for Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing. Prashant earned his MBA form Capella and holds certifications as an Oracle DBA and in Cognos BI suite. In his current role, Prashant ensures that all technical solutions are cost effective, appropriate, and adhere to Capella standards and best practices.

Mark Vaillancourt is a SQL Server MVP and a Business Intelligence Enterprise Consultant for Digineer, a Microsoft partner based in Plymouth, MN. He has been working with SQL Server since 2007 and holds the MCITP – Business Intelligence Developer 2008 certification. With a background in Theater and Improvised Comedy, Mark makes sure that his presentations are both informative and fun.

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q2 Meeting Follow Up

Posted by denglishbi on June 6, 2014

This past Tuesday we had our Q2 meeting.  This was our 3rd meeting of the year.  We had a great turnout and the room was full with over 80 people in attendance. Needless to say the night did not go off with a hitch, technical difficulties including one projector not working so a temp replacement was used, speakers not working in all of the rooms, and then we lost power during the middle of the second presentation.  Microsoft did a fabulous job working on getting these issues resolved, it was just not our night.  I want to thank everyone for their patience, including the speakers.

The content from the meeting should be posted in our Archive area soon – Past Events and Presentations.

In the meantime you can view the opening announcement slide deck here and checkout the upcoming events including TDWI Minneapolis Chapter, PASSMN June Meeting (Lightning Talks this month), and PASS BA VC session.

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We had two great presentations – Don covered the 5 Principles for Creating Effective Data Visualizations (outstanding content and examples)

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The one resource link that was excluded was the Interactive Demo, Katz Dialect Survey Maps, http://spark.rstudio.com/jkatz/SurveyMaps/.

Here are a couple of other resources that you might find helpful that are posted on the Microsoft downloads done by Stephen Few:

And then Polaris did a case study on how they ended up replacing QlikView with the Microsoft BI stack and demoed their dashboards using PerformancePoint and SSRS.

Here are a few links that Michael Wissink mentioned with regards to using perspectives in PerformancePoint and also security for the Save As My Defaults for the Apply Filters functionality

I also want to mention that we have now received our discount code for the PASS Summit 2014 Conference for the user group.  If you are planning on attending make sure you use the following code and you will save $150 and this will also help benefit our user group as well!

Event – PASS Summit 2014 Conference (Nov 3-7)

Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group
Discount Code: USNCS27

Thanks to everyone that attended our meeting and don’t forget there is a Special Training Event this month on Thursday, June 27 from 3 to 5 (seating is limited, so register now):

Deep Dive into ETL Implementation with SQL Server Integration Services

Registration Link

This session will focus on demonstrations and implementation details covering:

– Leveraging common ETL patterns/options to handle change data capture and covering new capabilities of SQL Server 2014

– Leveraging scripting in Data Flow and tips/tricks to improve performance

– Best practices in ETL Implementation with SSIS

– Executing projects with SSIS catalog; design considerations, best practices and performance monitoring.

At the end of the session, sample code and examples will be provided to all attendees. Complimentary refreshments will be provided during breaks.

About Our Speaker: Anton Rozenson is a Solutions Architect with GNet Group. He has in-depth experience in developing architectures, and leading business productivity projects that span the entire Microsoft Business Intelligence platform. Anton has worked on several successful solution development projects to build end-to-end Data Warehouses with Microsoft SQL Server.

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Minnesota Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q2 Meeting–June 3

Posted by denglishbi on May 22, 2014

The next MN Microsoft Business Intelligence User Group is coming up on Tuesday, June 3. This meeting we will have two presentations starting out with a presentation on effective visualizations and the second one is a case study by Polaris on using the Microsoft BI tools to monitor warranty claims and resolve quality issues. Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed.image

MN Microsoft BI User Group 2014 Q2 Meeting

Sponsored by:

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Date: Tuesday, June 3, 2014image

Check In: 2:30 PM Event Time: 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Location: Microsoft Technology Center – 3601 76th St W, Suite 600 Edina MN 55435 (in LOW 1, 2, and 3)

Please Register Now (Please register so that we can have your name badge pre-printed)

Agenda:

  • 2:30-3:00 : Registration
  • 3:00-3:15 : Microsoft BI User Group Updates & Announcements
  • 3:15-4:15 : Show Me the Numbers: Five Principles for Creating Effective Data Visualizations
  • 4:15-4:30 : Break
  • 4:30-5:30 : Using Microsoft BI for Early Warning, Warranty and Quality Management
  • 5:30-6:00 : Social and Networking

Presentations:

Session 1: Show Me the Numbers: Five Principles for Creating Effective Data Visualizations

Data visualization skills are essential in today’s data environment. It allows for actionable insight and faster decisions. Data visualization is a key skill in the current data and analytics mission and the Microsoft BI and Office tools are important delivery vehicles for organizations looking to make sense of their data with great charts and dashboards.

However great visualizations require that we make good decisions around a few essential design principles. Many of us don’t consider ourselves as designers or well-equipped to make good design decisions. This session will try to help by validating the important role of data visualization and provide five principles that are key to extracting value from your growing data environment. These five principles are distilled directly from great data visualization thought leaders like Edward Tufte and Stephen Few. You will explore these principles with specific best practices that work, sprinkled with a sampling of charts and approaches that fail to deliver insight. We will explain why that 3D exploding pie chart that you occasionally see was not designed with these principles in mind. Additionally, the session will provide resources that you can use to help you make good decisions and to get inspiration.

Speaker: Don Frederisken

Don Frederiksen (@donfred) is currently Data Services Manager at G&K Services where he leads a team of data and business intelligence professionals. G&K Services, Inc. is a service-focused market leader of branded uniform and facility services programs in the United States, and is the largest such provider in Canada.

As a veteran information architect and manager, he has shepherded the launch of business intelligence and data management programs at four different companies. As a BI developer he has created dashboard solutions at two organizations. As an educator and entrepreneur, Don has over twenty years of experience in helping professionals and organizations understand and maximize their technology investments. 

Session 2: Using Microsoft BI for Early Warning, Warranty and Quality Management

Polaris Industries, a pioneer in the snowmobile industry, is one of the world’s largest off-road vehicle manufacturers. Polaris needed much better visibility to component failures on products. Warranty claims account for a significant amount of money and some components failures could even possibly result in safety concerns. By providing advanced notice of failures, the service and engineering teams can react faster to remedy the issues by quickly getting answers to questions like, ‘what components have the most failures over time,’ ‘what regions have the highest number of claims and why,’ ‘how many average miles on units with claims,’ and many other metrics.

In this presentation we will see how Polaris leverages data and Microsoft BI tools to make it easier to monitor warranty claims and other data to spot and resolve quality issues swiftly in order to achieve and maintain its commitment to quality.

Speakers: John Antholz and Michael Wissink

John Antholz has worked in IT as a developer, DBA, Data Architect and manager for over 20 years, and is currently the BI Manager at Polaris Industries. The past five years he has been focused on how companies can leverage data as a strategic asset by working to implement business intelligence solutions in a cost effective manner, which offer flexibility for all levels of the organization.

Michael Wissink has spent the past two years working in Business Intelligence and SharePoint Administration at Polaris. He has experience using many different BI tools and has done everything from ETL in SSIS to dashboards in PerformancePoint. With development experience in QlikView, PowerPivot, SSIS, SSRS, SSAS and PerformancePoint, he has a broad skill set and has delivered many quality analytics solutions.

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