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The fundamentals of management information - A

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Analysis templates


Animation

Rarely used in management information. There is great potential for using animation in tickers, time lapses, slow motion as well as through changes in size and positioning. Here, too, you need to follow a few simple rules if you don’t want the eye candy to strain your vision. Columns that blossoms from the center instead of growing from the base (which would visualize the different heights by making them grow longer) is one example of poor animation. DeltaMaster animates portfolio analyses and sparklines, displays images and text as tickers, and uses sound animation.


App-ification

Maybe Steve Jobs didn’t call it this, but he probably thought about it when he declared the dawn of the post-PC era. In business intelligence, the business world must and will be app-ified. Anything that won’t fit on a smartphone screen will have trouble holding people’s attention in the hustle and bustle of day-to-day management. A suitable concept of → operation is key to the success of app-ification. To achieve this, we are working on what we call → haptic reasoning.


Arrows

Common symbol for change – simple, yet very rough. If you understand things quickly, you also presume that there is more to it – namely, a trend. Bella has already criticized that. We feel that writing the change as a percentage is often more useful and just as easy to understand. DeltaMaster only uses arrows to designate actual trends that it has automatically calculated – and draws them using various slopes.


Artificial Intelligence (AI)

A completely overloaded term, often equated with just one small slice of its actual potential – machine learning with neuronal networks. In management information, we are interested primarily in automating human behavior. This is as ambiguous as it looks: To begin with, algorithms are meant to mimic intelligent behavior. Secondly, algorithms are meant to produce intelligent behavior. We have identified six fields for this: → modeling, → evaluation, → visualization, → perception, → observation and → operation. You can find out more in this video with Dr. Nicolas Bissantz (in German).


Attention

A bottleneck through which all management information must pass. Its capacity is often overestimated. Everyone knows that time is limited. Attention is even more so because it is strenuous and people are lazy by nature when it comes to thinking. Findings in the field of brain research show why. “Thinking is expensive,” explains the neurobiologist Prof. Gerhard Roth. Since the human brain requires so much energy to think, it primarily makes the effort when it subjectively views something as being new and important.” Deep understanding, however, also requires a bit of contemplation. The Report Weather of DeltaMaster uses colors to grab your attention and a hierarchal information concept to direct your attention. That is something at least.


Attributes

Characteristics of members or a group of them. Attributes are very important in modeling and can contain information such as article numbers or long and short names. They usually end up in analytic data models – typically, in alias columns where they can be displayed as alternative or additional information. Attributes with the same characteristics for multiple members can be combined into groups and aggregations, if required, on multiple levels. This structure determines if you can make generalized statements about the data. In this context, something that we call an “Easter egg paradox” also occurs. If you assume that there are correla­tions between revenues and industries, company size, regions, etc., these attri­butes must also be available as dimensions and – through a rough aggregation – allow value clusters. DeltaMaster offers clever options to deal with aggregations – subsequently, dynamically, or in a data-driven way.