Xcelsius Taps into a Memorable Pulp Fiction Line
by Scott Wallask, Managing Editor, BusinessObjects Expert
January 16, 2012
Rumors of Xcelsius’ demise got a lot of people talking about the future of the software.
Did any of you out there see the movie Pulp Fiction? During the film, there’s a scene in which actor Bruce Willis remarks about another character’s demise: “Zed’s dead, baby. Zed’s dead.” Willis then revs a motorcycle engine and rides off.
Not too long ago, I read that “Xcelsius is dead,” and instead of a motorcycle’s roar, I heard the loud typing of keyboards and phone pads as people reacted to the statement. Consultant Mico Yuk of Everything Xcelsius was behind those spit-fire words, although it seems she was more expressing her personal opinion rather than a behind-the-scene scoop from SAP.
Nonetheless, her comments got people talking about the future of Xcelsius:
- Lucas’ words led some, including BI professional and blogger Pieter Hendrikx, to conclude that the HTML 5 announcement doesn’t really signal an enhancement. “The front rows of the mobile product roadmap fashion show are booked for SAP BusinessObjects Mobile, SAP BusinessObjects Explorer, and the Sybase Unwired Platform, where you can build your own apps,” Hendrikx wrote. “It almost feels like Xcelsius is locked up in a toilet and receives a HTML 5 lollipop to prevent it from starting to cry.”
- Meanwhile, BusinessObjects trainer Dallas Marks said an HTML 5 version of Xcelsius isn’t the answer for mobile analytics. “SAP BusinessObjects customers do not need Xcelsius on their tablets,” Marks wrote on his blog, adding that a truly useful mobile BI tool will be designed with mobile devices in mind, and not simply be a retrofitted version of old software.
- And BI senior analyst and SAP mentor Jamie Oswald jumped in, stating, “In my experience, end users care very little about what app was used to create a report or visualization, but they care about what information is on it. “ In other words, take history-laden product names like Xcelsius out of the mix, and just deliver the goods to a user’s mobile device by the best means available.
So where does this leave Xcelsius? It’s pretty clear SAP has gelded the product, at least in name, by now calling it BusinessObjects Dashboards. You’ve got loyalists to Xcelsius who take umbrage to this approach, while others believe the next generation of BI tools will be better than Xcelsius.
Back in my days of newspaper reporting, there were often files that contained pre-written obituaries for famous local or national figures. The point was that if you kept the obit up-to-date and ready to go, you could publish the piece quickly should a famous person suddenly die. I feel similarly that the Xcelsius obit is being written and stored away, waiting for the day—to paraphrase Pulp Fiction—when “Xclesius is dead, baby.”
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