IBM Cognos Business Intelligence is IBM's Business Intelligence platform, which allows the creation of reports and dashboards, accessible from a web environment.
IBM Cognos BI is a Business Intelligence platform based on a centralised data or metadata model, developed by the IT department with IBM Cognos Framework Manager software, which usually works in ROLAP mode on relational databases that make up the corporate Data Warehose, although it can also use Cognos OLAP cubes (Powercubes developed with Cognos Transformer) or third parties as the model's data source.
The main tool for the development and publication of reports by IT is IBM Cognos Report Studio, accessible from the platform's web portal, although there are other tools such as Cognos Analysis Studio for analytics and cube exploration, or Cognos Event Studio for the creation of KPIs and management of events and alerts.
As an optional component, the platform has add-ins for MS Office IBM Cognos For Office and IBM Cognos Analysis For Excel, which allow, respectively, to integrate Cognos reports into Office tools such as Excel, Word or Powerpoint, or provide the business user with the ability to perform analysis and data discovery on the Cognos model from an Excel sheet.
It also enables the creation of reports for iPad, iPhone and Android tablets and smartphones, viewable through the IBM Cognos Mobile app.
It has extensible support for Big Data, with the possibility of connecting to sources such as Cloudera, Apache, Hortonworks, IBM InfoSphereInsights...
The traditional IBM Cognos Business Intelligence installation follows a client/server installation model, and although you can still use some desktop applications on developer machines, or on the server itself, most of the platform is already managed through the web portal provided by the BI server. IBM offers a licensing model based on processing and named users for this type of installation.
The latest additions to IBM Cognos BI are self-service Business Intelligence oriented tools, such as IBM Cognos Analytics, which allow the business user to explore data and create their own dashboards and reports, based on the model, but with more independence from the IT department.
There is also the option of using the platform in SaaS mode on the IBM Cloud, with a subscription-based licensing model, as is common for cloud solutions.
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