2 Replies Latest reply on Jan 7, 2009 3:42 PM by formerpigeek



      [Edit after first post: I have posted this before reading the document "Streaming Business Intelligence" available in the vCampus Library section. ]

      While reading two books about Microsoft PerformancePoint 2007 lately, it was hard for me not to notice 'themes' that are familiar to us readers of OSIsoft documentation and marketing materials.  The books (1) tell you that PerformancePoint alleviates the problem caused by data silos, (2) remind you that you cannot manage what you cannot measure, (3) encourage you to get into a 'monitor, analyze, plan' cycle, (4) recommend building a 'data warehouse to provide one version of the truth', etc...  In other words, at least in product litterature, there is a huge overlap between what many would like to do with PI, on one hand, and what PerformancePoint promises, on the other.


      After starting with the question of "Where does PerformancePoint fit in a PI-based infrastructure?", it is easy to end up asking this question the other way around "Where does PI fit in a PerformancePoint-centric solution?"  It would be really interesting to determine which of these "product-centric" perspectives is more technically correct, and under what conditions.


      I do not have first hand experience with PerformancePoint to determine what is hyped in the documentation vs. what is really powerful in it.  But the examples addressed in the books seem to show that the platform delivers attractive methods of monitoring and analyzing data.  So, perhaps, a more practical question would be to ask, "what would it take to develop a PI-centric solution that delivers PerformancePoint-like monitoring and analysis features but without using PerformancePoint?"  How short-sighted is it to seek value primarily through PeformancePoint and consider PI as only one type of data source in the overall solution?


      Finally, knowing that OSIsoft is a Microsoft Gold Partner, it would be nice to know if AF Roadmap is affected at all by the "expected/predicted" evolution of the Microsoft PerformancePoint.


      I know I am only thinking out loud here, but it would be nice to hear other thoughts on this subject.



        • Re: PerformancePoint

          MANY good questions.  It's great to see your note that you found the BI accelerator.  That should provide a lot of help to walk you through a PI-PerformancePoint integration.  However the questions you ask are not so much technical as philosophical.  I’ll try to provide insight as best I can.


          Where does PerformancePoint fit in a PI-based infrastructure?” versus “Where does PI fit in a PerformancePoint-centric solution?"


          Well, it depends where you start.  Assuming you have a PI System infrastructure in place, the first would apply. But either way, PPS (and I will take the liberty of including MS SQL Server w/ Integration Services and Analysis Services in that) provides a great consolidation and analysis layer.  In other words, BI isn’t about looking at your operations data.  It’s about adding a visibility layer across your enterprise.


          To elaborate, if you are only looking at operations data – raw data, formulas, calculations, etc – the PI system provides a banquet of functionality.  And PPS would look redundant.  Even if you are looking across your enterprise (multiple PI servers) the PI tools and interfaces cover it.


          But when you want to consolidate silo'd data across your enterprise – compare operations data to targets from ERP and formulate Enterprise KPI’s (not just measurements and metrics) – then the BI layer can add a great deal.  In this case, PI would be the source of real-tiem operations data to the BI infrstructure.


          One example – if you want to track energy performance, you can’t just look at consumption. If you made more widgets than planned, you should have used more energy, and that’s probably a good thing.  Energy performance needs to be a determinant of usage, target, cost, delta in production output, etc.  Some data comes from PI, other data does not.


          Hope this helps.


          David Doll - Microsoft Alliance Program Manager

            • Re: PerformancePoint

              Finally, knowing that OSIsoft is a Microsoft Gold Partner, it would be nice to know if AF Roadmap is affected at all by the "expected/predicted" evolution of the Microsoft PerformancePoint.


              Both PI and AF servers (the PI System) are data sources for Performance Point. AF essentially brings structure to the PI data abstracting tag names and exposing the process data in a more asset centric way, which is really what BI tools need. So our goal is to make both PI and AF data more accessible so higher level tools such as PPS can easily extract the data they need. And this is what's in the making by exposing AF data through an OLEDB provider and webservices. You will see more about that later in 2009.