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Playing with BIRT

Some time ago I started to experiment with BIRT, the eclipse based Business Intelligence and Reporting Tool. Recently I’ve been taking another look at it. I found some examples of how to set it up to talk SOAP and after a little bit of experimentation got it to work. Great!.

Then I thought, what about viewing the reports in a web browser. A bit more digging and I found some info on using the BIRT Report Viewer (in the run time download) with Apache tomcat. So off I toddled to grab tomcat and the viewer,  and after a few false starts (never done this before) I managed to get it all running and my report visible in my web browser.

So now I am wondering if I can format the reports nicely to view on an iPhone (should just be some CSS) but also, could I embed some javascript like jQuery or iUI into the reports so that they behave like regular web apps but give me the ability to do the actual design using a decent tool.

Mmmmm. Brain cells are waking up….

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  1. January 16, 2010 at 3:57 am

    Have you looked at Tivoli Common Reporting, which is also based on BIRT? It adds some nice wrappers, such as the ability to launch a web-based report using a URL.

  2. January 17, 2010 at 12:34 am

    I am taking a look at it but speed (of setup)and simplicity are my main requirements right now. BIRT and tomcat was very easy (even for me) in that respect.

    I am trying to generate reports that:

    a) Talk to ITM using the SOAP interface. So far as I know right now, the TCR reports would not be any different from a raw BIRT report in that respect. Unless TCR offers some additional tools to make designing the reports in BIRT much easier, there’s going to be no difference in that part of the task.

    b) I want to access the reports via an iPhone (or any smart phone) so I need the reports to be specially tailored for that platform as far as viewing and usability is concerned.

  3. Jim
    January 24, 2010 at 1:52 am

    VERY interested in your progress with embedding jQuery in BIRT. We want to add sparklines and bullet graphs to our BIRT designs. Maybe this is the way?

    Let us know what happens!

    Jim

  4. Virgil Dodson
    February 25, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    The iPhone does have a smaller screen real estate that you have to think about while designing the report, but it can be done. You can see for yourself that it is possible by downloading the BIRT app from the iphone app store.

    • February 25, 2010 at 5:44 pm

      Thanks, I didn’t even know there was a BIRT app. I’ll take a look at it.

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