The World of HTML5 Dashboards

by Bree-Anna Mustad on December 28, 2017 No comments

Although it was a quiet webinar the day after Christmas, our Speak BO viewers had a lot to say about Taylor Packwood’s in-depth look at what it takes to develop HTML5 Dashboards.

Taylor, having years of custom-coding experience as well as being one of InfoSol’s top SAP Dashboards (formally Xcelsius) developers, shared everything from dashboard design tips to developing challenges and solutions when diving into dashboards project.

In a world slowly moving away from Flash, Taylor showcased the differences in Dashboard display per browser type  and discussed some of the key things to consider when deploying HTML5 Dashboards. He provided an example of this by demoing what a single component looked like housed in Chrome, Firefox, IE, and mobile – and how the same component from SAP Dashboards can actually appear differently depending on which browser is used for the Dashboard output. The important piece to take away from this that Taylor pointed out is that you never know what the end user will see unless you test the display of a dashboard in different modes.

Taylor then dove into what it takes to plan an efficient HTML5 Dashboard project by highlighting the importance of being proactive in your planning; planning ahead regardless of any foreseen (and more importantly, unforeseen) usage of the production dashboard. He explained that one of the things a lot of organizations today do not do, but should consider, is always begin dashboard projects by developing in HTML5 first (rather than Flash first). When doing so an organization would preemptively be ahead of any unforeseen end-user consumption, which in turn will save time. From first-hand experience, Taylor brought up this valuable project-planning suggestion based upon his own personal experience; having spent months assisting an organizations development for Flash to later realize that their customers actually had mobile requirements. Needless to say, the organization then scratched the original flash-based dashboard to begin the process again, this time in HTML5 in order to fit the demand of every end user, rather than the few that were originally planned for.

A design suggestion that was also demonstrated in this fascinating webinar was the use of 3rd party components and the ability to use HTML5-engineered components in order to ensure the display of a dashboard regardless of the end users browser. Taylor noted that most 3rd party components developed in HTML5 seem to be more reliable and display the same while sizing appropriately, regardless of the end users browser or mobile device.

Stream Taylor's webinar here

I personally enjoyed learning in this webinar how to become more efficient in the process of developing a dashboard by some of the project planning tips Taylor provided to the audience based upon his experience. One of the challenges that Taylor discussed in the webinar was the challenge of security and how one can plan ahead when developing the dashboard to consider all security options for their end users. One of the tips Taylor suggested in the webinar was that of designing "single sign-on" within the Dashboard itself. He demonstrated an example by showcasing a "sign in” Dashboard where the end user is prompted to supply credentials in order to access the next tab of the Dashboard. This example got great responses from the audience as Taylor demonstrated the development of this fairly easily using native SAP Dashboards (Xceslius) components.

In conclusion, 2017 was a great year of Speak BO webinars showcasing a lineup of experts and customers sharing stories and educational sessions on how to improve your work within the BusinessObjects space. We have been blessed with experienced developers like Taylor Packwood, who continue to leverage their expertise by sharing tips and tricks, challenges and solutions on developing in SAP Dashboards. This webinar was yet another informative training tool for those looking to expand their developing skills in SAP Dashboards.

Bree-Anna MustadThe World of HTML5 Dashboards

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