Reports and report sources - two tiers for better business intelligence solutions
September 19, 2011 by Igor Lozhkin
Arnica WebReport is based on layered architecture, which includes reports and report sources. Separating the two main parts of the report creation process, i.e. connection to database or any other data source and output presentation, helps create a foundation for easier report building and promotes design re-use.
Report sources are responsible for connecting to databases, web services, files and other sources, which provide raw data to reports.
Report source discovers available columns, their data type, generates default column captions, and specifies which columns are available to reports. Designers may create report source parameters, which are used at query level to dynamically customize requests sent to database.
Multiple reports may be created against the same report source. At report level, designers do not think about how data is obtained, but rather focus on the business requirements of how data should be presented.
Report has access to columns exposed by report source, and provides tools for creating report-specific custom columns. Report parameters and filters provide additional workflow dynamics and may be used in prompt pages, various interactive dialog pages, data filters and other conditions.
When underlying database structure is changed (new columns are added, columns are removed or modified, etc.), report source synchronizes all changes to reports, which are based on this report source.
The diagram below summarizes how reports and report sources are seamlessly integrated in order to help you build reporting and business intelligence solutions with Arnica WebReport
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