Cognos Analytics

Enhance your Cognos Analytics experience with some Schematics!

By Torben Noer posted Fri September 04, 2020 06:18 AM

  
Looking for some examples on what Schematics can bring to your Analytics Experience? Or just in need for visualizing data on an US Cartogram, a Periodic Table, an Office Floor plan, a Stadium or the UK Parliament? Then read on!

We have just published 4 more Schematics examples to the Accelerator Catalog, ready to use with sample data: https://community.ibm.com/accelerators/?context=analytics&type=Schematic

But first a couple of words on Schematics... Where custom visualization is all about coding your own visualizations, Schematics is SVG based images where you can color areas of the image with data slots... so no coding! Schematics, also referred to as "Non-geo mapping" can be anything represented by an image - most common used examples are airplane seating's, maps that are not Geospatial focused, Cartograms, Dentals, abstracts, malls, casinos, cruise ships, engines but could also be company logo’s, landmarks, network diagrams etc. It 

How do I use it?

1)Find your SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) based image
2)Annotate your SVG image in a SVG editor like Inkscape
3)Test your new enriched SVG image in CA dashboards or CA Reporting directly against a local file.
4)Upload the final SVG file to Cognos Analytics and add permissions on it.
We have a lot of examples on how to create your own Schematics by using Inkscape :
https://community.ibm.com/community/user/businessanalytics/blogs/marco-maas1/2019/12/20/using-inkscape-to-annotate-schematics
And the documentation: https://www.ibm.com/support/knowledgecenter/en/SSEP7J_11.1.0/com.ibm.swg.ba.cognos.dg_custom_vis.doc/ca_developingschematics_intro.html

You can actually create your own Schematics in just 5 minutes.... 
1) Grab one of the US Cartogram SVG's from here: http://bl.ocks.org/veltman/c7bfb3d4a3817f7ee0bf2dd19ff058c1
2) Open Notepad and paste the code from one of the SVG's into 
3) You will need to add the data-cv-key for each state:

4) Save the SVG file and test it in Cognos Analytics! Simple as that... you can test it out with some data that has a key with the state id's like PA, MA, NE

Now to the new samples:

US Cartogram:
Cartogram's are maps shown in a diagrammatic form, that can be very different compared to real maps... taking the US as an example, where showing information's per state can be difficult since there is a huge difference in area size. This Schematic example gives you 6 different version of the US map, split into state - download the sample and upload it directly into Cognos Analytics - in dashboard or reports, it's now possible to flip through the 6 different ways of representing the data on the map.
Slide Twohttps://community.ibm.com/accelerators/catalog/content/USA-cartograms-visualized-by-number-of-sellers-in-each-state

Periodic Table:
Periodic Table is another great example of Schematics... it's a map, this time of the Periodic system. Remember to use the demo data to quickly see how it works with colors on..  and try to open the SVG in either a notepad or Inkscape - this should give an idea of how to create your own schematics also, you can see the boundaries defined and the key attached to it.
Slide Twohttps://community.ibm.com/accelerators/catalog/content/Periodic-Table-visualized-by-annual-sales

Office Floor plan:
One of the requests for Schematics we are getting, is around floor plans. This could be a production site, a warehouse or as in this example, an office floor plan - in these COVID-19 times, it can be very helpful to see how many desk that are occupied in an office and that's what this example can show. Both for the desk itself and the area. This is an example of how a floor plan could look like, but you would of course need your own SVG with your floor plan to make it usable. Hopefully this can serve as an inspiration to how you can enhance your CA system to also show these kinds of visualizations.
Slide Twohttps://community.ibm.com/accelerators/catalog/content/Office-floor-plan-visualized-by-occupancy

Stadium:
Lastly, another great example of a Schematic - a Stadium! This example is only down to the sections, it would require some more work to handle a 40,000 seats stadium ;-) but it shows how to have a more colorful schematics and serve as an example of SVG's  with more complex set of informations. Like with the others, this sample comes with sample data so you can just download the sample and upload it to your CA system with the sample data to get it to work.
Slide Twohttps://community.ibm.com/accelerators/catalog/content/Stadium-visualized-by-seat-section-sales

With the release of Schematics in 11.1.5 we also added the UK Parliament example, which is also to be found at the Accelerator Catalog: https://community.ibm.com/accelerators/catalog/content/UK-Parliament-Brexit-vote-visualized-by-seat

As mentioned, the examples are numerous out there - the first task is to find a proper SVG with the areas already defined (open it in Inkscape and see whether you can select different areas in the SVG) - from there, it's an easy task to include in Cognos Analytics.

Feel free to comment on this blog with suggestions on future samples we can upload to the Catalog!
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