BITeamwork is collaboration management plug-in for Oracle Business Intelligence (OBIEE) 11g that provides Collaborative and Social Business Intelligence (BI) functionality. Most of its functions that you will make use of are transparent as they provide an intuitive augmentation of the main BI System. It is a complete comment management system allowing for customizations and integration capabilities with well-adopted enterprise Social networks such as Salesforce Chatter. It is the packaged solution for leaving comments on dashboards, cell annotations, and inline cell comments on reports with context-based information which can be referenced by other users in OBIEE when using data from any type of data source including Oracle Essbase.
As a user, to get started, the easiest way to learn is watch our BITeamwork videos. Second to that, read the documentation below to gain specific knowledge of how to manage your user settings, send cross vendor comments to Salesforce.com Chatter or Yammer, create dashboard comments, and more. You'll find that BITeamwork is quite intuitive and powerful. And, if you think that it is not, then we want to hear from you on our forums so that we can make it better.
Also, check our browser certification guide, BITeamwork Device and Browser Support , to make sure you're using a compatible browser version.
The main user interface to using BITeamwork is based on the Global Header of the Business Intelligence dashboard portal. This is seen in the image below as the area of the BI Application where the navigation links reside. This is called the BITeamwork Toolbar.
Per the image here is a brief description of each BITeamwork Toolbar navigation element based on the indicating letter reference.
The BITeamwork Toolbar is the main access point for working with commentary. The ability to see this option is controlled by your BI Administrator. Meaning if you don't have privileges for the BITeamwork Toolbar then it is not visible to you when accessing dashboards.
NOTE: If there is no view content on a dashboard BITeamwork does not engage and the BITeamwork Toolbar will not be visible.
Each BITeamwork user, if given the correct privileges by your organization's BITeamwork Administrator, will have the ability to manage one or more settings or configurations associated with their account.
The Settings tab can be accessed from clicking the View Dashboard Comments link on the BITeamwork Toolbar. Users may have only few or all of the options below depending on privileges.
Dashboard comments are created to annotate or otherwise communicate activity or action in respect to the dashboard. There are many use cases for leaving dashboard comments for other users within the organization to view. BITeamwork also has the ability to pass comments on to other Social Vendors such as Chatter and Yammer. Dashboard comments are dashboard page specific and are not transferred to another dashboard. Dashboard comments have the ability to reference comment context specific to the dashboard such as that denoted by changing prompt values, etc.
Creating a Dashboard Comment increments the Dashboard Comment count in the BITeamwork Toolbar found in the OBIEE Global Header.
You must have appropriate privileges to create dashboard comments.
Assigning Comments to a user or Application Role directly when submitting a new comment (not a Reply) will initiate a direct Email and Oracle BI Agent Alert to the recipient(s) defined in the list.
This is a call to action for the recipient(s) of the comment.
If you assign a comment, the comment is still added to the system.
It will still abide by all comment object properties such as being global to the context in which it was created (i.e.: Dashboard, View, Cell via any prompt selections).
To assign a Comment Notification to a user or application role (group):
You must have appropriate privileges to assign notification of comments. Only the Enterprise licensed edition of BITeamwork allows assigning comments.
See also Receiving Assigned Comments
A View (Dashboard View) comment is very similar to a Dashboard Comment in that by creating either a Dashboard Comment or View Comment the Dashboard Counter in the Global Header of the application will increment. The main difference is that a View Comment is specific to an individual object within the dashboard. Objects are also referred to as Views based on the way they are created during the report and dashboard development process. The objects available for a View Comment are:
You must have appropriate privileges to create dashboard view comments.
Comments that annotate a table or pivot table cell to indicate a comment or call to action can be achieved by clicking the augmentation icon from the BITeamwork icons on the Global Header.
You must have appropriate privileges to create dashboard comments.
NOTE: Comments created through any type of commentary option (ex: inline cell comment, dashboard/report comment, cell annotation, etc.) are affixed to the report and dashboard reference on which they are created. Any change to the dashboard or report name, or column structure (twRid) for an ILC comment, will invalidate existing comments due to the storage reference of the comment in the BITeamwork repository. If a report or dashboard object (or TwRid for ILC Comments) change is required, a subsequent modification to the BITeamwork repository using SQL or other logic will be required by your Database Administrator, in order to re-validate the comment reference.
In-line cell comments are those that are built directly within the the row or record for which the table or pivot table is constituted.
These comments are only available in a table or pivot table view. These comments are based on the same comment "object" as the dashboard, view, and cell annotation comments.
Which means the comments have the same key attributes and properties for security, context sensitivity, etc.
Currently this feature is compatible in OBIEE versions 188.8.131.52.0 and above. ( View API Attributes )
Follow the steps below in order to successfully implement this functionality for any given report:
'<div id="twICDiv_" class="twICDiv" twTextBoxCSS="width:250px;" twRId="' '"></div>'
NOTE: It is very important to initially leave the blank row intact. This will be filled in with your unique combination of data or columns which will make each row distinguishingly unique in order to reference the comment. This will be explained further at the bottom of this example.
The syntax for the concatenation filling in the blank row from above is:
|| “Cust Regions”.”C52 Country Name” || “Products”.”P1 Product” ||
Here there are two columns used to distinguish each unique row in the table for which a comment will be associated.
Preceding the initial double pipe (||) is: twRId=”’ (after the twRId= there is a double-quote and then a single-quote)
At the end of the last double pipe (||) there is: ‘“></div>’ (a single-quote and then a double-quote followed by ></div> and a single-quote)
NOTE: For multiple reports displayed on the same dashboard or dashboard page, with the same Inline Cell Comment columns and unique twRId combination, an additional unique qualifier must added to the twRId to distinguish between the two reports. For example, a twRId that is similar between two reports on the same dashboard page should add a suffix (hardcoded or otherwise) that distinguishes the two twRId's per report, making them truly unique at the dashboard page level. To illustrate this, for the first report, twRId="' ||"Table"."Column1"||"Table"."Column2"||'_reportA"' and for the second report, twRId="' ||"Table"."Column1"||"Table"."Column2"||'_reportB"' , where reportA and reportB are the two reports presented on the same dashboard page.
NOTE: Clicking the “Results” tab of the analysis editor will not see the comment text area for this new comment column. The column text area will only show when the report is rendered on the dashboard as the testing of entering comments in the Results tab is not optimal for the commentary solution.
NOTE: Version 3.0 provides this inline comment functionality in a read/write single comment per filter context capability. All comments are tied into our common commenting framework but as of 2014/10/20 the inline comment functionality defined as you’ve read above until we receive further customer requests for additional features or enhancements
BITeamwork 3.0 now has controls in place to allow customers to customize several features of the platform. Part of which to do with the inline commenting is the ability to modify the style, size, and color of the text area in the cell for which inline commenting is needed. Following the API instructions with examples below will allow you to customize the areas outline below using the API. We are looking for additional customer enhancement requests for this topic at the moment to expand this capability. View API Attributes
Text Area Input
The attributes of the text field can be fairly completely customized to the look and feel that you need from a Cascading Stylesheet (CSS) perspective. In order to do this, in the DIV object used in the Custom Formula you will need to add an attribute, twTextCSS. This attribute will hold CSS attributes for an HTML5 textarea object.
By default, the comment text area is defined with only the following attributes:
border: 1px #aaa solid; resize: none; width:400px;
'<div id="twICDiv_" class="twICDiv" twTextBoxCSS="width:230px;height:20px;background-color:#ccc;" twRId="' || "Time"."Per Name Year" || "Products"."Product" || '"></div>'
Enabling Standard Comment Object Features
By default in BITeamwork 3.0 the inline commenting option is set to provide a streamlined simple system of commenting although it is well grounded as a comment object in the BITeamwork framework. As of this release when a comment is created is stays in place in the table. The “Save Comment” option immediately changes to “Update Comment”. The comment can then be appended to or erased entirely as it is configured to be a transient comment placeholder.
In order to provide standard comment functionality such as that seen for dashboard comments or the cell annotation functionality, the following attribute should be added to the DIV tag in in the inline column custom formula,
basic - is the default mode described above
full - provide options as seen on other aspects of the BITeamwork integration functionality feature set under the Options… links.
this is not available in BITeamwork 3.0 but will be accessible in a later version
Intentionally Left Blank
Place Holder text value showing in the inline comment text box when no comment yet exists.
Any text characters except !, &, or %
Not entered or No Value
Defaults to “Enter Comment…”
You can use “...” as the value so that no characters are shown
Determines if the textboxes will auto expand to the size of the commentary entered for the respective inline comment field. Auto or on provide auto expanding to match text entered.
Not entered or No Value
Cascading Style Sheet and styling of the text box
Any CSS, however avoid !,&, or % characters as these characters will break the rendering of the inline comments
Not entered or No Value
Defaults to “Enter Comment…”
If editing is allowed for inline comments fields in the report
Not entered or No Value
Defaults to editing allows
Determines if the menu (icon with three lines) is showing per each ILC.
Determines the positioning of the menu (icon with three lines) is showing per each ILC.
Sets the "Save" link button text displayed to the user for each ILC of the column.
Characters limited to 10.
Sets the link text displayed for editing an ILC
Any Characters limited to 20 max characters
Allows the ILC column to accept any character range of characters greater than 0. This is typically used for capturing numeric values for custom ILC field use cases. As of version 3.8.6, it allows any empty or no length input. Typically one would use this fro numeric values and can further support validation using the API attribute, twAPI_reg_ex_check.
Allows the inline cell comment to have the ability to pass a myriad of specifications before the input value can be considered successful.
The value for this attribute is a Regular Expression, which can be tested/asserted against the input comment (string/value) entered into the inline comment field.
This is perfect for validating input where a specific format or structure is required. For example, if your input requires, only numeric values, only characters, characters with a specific lenght, phone numbers, or any characters meeting a specific format.
Any testable Regular Expression which results is a pass (true) or fail (false) recognition of the ILC input.
Default: (There is no default value. If used in the ILC custom formula it must be a valid Reg Ex, otherwise the result is false)
One may use the attribute with an empty value, for example: twAPI_reg_ex_check=""
Sets the separator area between the ILC save/edit/update link and the menu (icon with three stripes. This HTML and can be as simple as a "|" pipe which is the default or a HTML string such as   |
Characters limited to 10.
If set, will hide the icon menu from showing for the respective ILC column.
Data type to aim for providing one field that could contain numbers and be aggregated, other option here would be number
Possible values (as text string):
[string | number]
Delimiter for separating the data attributes from the ILC
Any URL able strings.
Default: | (a single pipe)
Having an issues:
See Troubleshooting Inline Cell Comments
A key feature of BITeamwork is the abililty to lock a comment to the Point of View (POV) of when the comment is originally authored. If a comment needs to be locked only one prompt selection value (or rather the values selected by a specific prompt) and not the selected values of the other prompts are inconsequential to the POV of the comment then Prompt Fix is used
For example: In the example report seen below there are two prompts which help predicate the report data. If the Time (T02 Per Month Name) dropdown has a value of 2010/07 selected and we only care about the context of that prompt value in reference to our column then this will become the "Prompt Fix". Even though the Product (P1 Product) prompt exists and can have values selected, if we use the Prompt Fix option to select the Time dimension option as the "Prompt Fix", then when another user views the report the comment context sensitivity is only relevant for the prompt fix POV select, Time, regardless of any or no values in the Product prompt value.
All comments can be secured. If a user is given the privilege to create a comment type then that user also has the ability to secure a comment.
NOTE: You must have appropriate privileges to create comments.
Viewing all dashboard comments can take place in several different ways. One or more of these approaches for an individual end-user or group may be restricted by the organization's BITeamwork administrator.
Creating a dashboard comment or a cell annotation may immediately provide you with a text field for entering comments. This field can either be a plain textbox area or it will be a text area having several formatting and insert options available above it. This latter type of entry field is referred to as the "Advanced Editor"
The Advanced Editor is a global configuration setting managed by your BI Administrator.
As of BITeamwork 3.0, this means that if the option to use the advanced editor is switch on, then all users will see the advanced editor. If switched off, then users only see the basic plain textbox area when leaving comments. This does not apply to inline cell comments.
As you can see in the screenshot above the advanced editor is robust and allows for many formatting features including adding images.
Using the View Dashboard Comments link in the Global Header, the BITeamwork pop-up will appear with several tabs. The initial tab from clicking on this link will always render the View All tab. Clicking on the History tab will review all comments posted by the current user.
The comments shown in the History tab are comments entered via BITeamwork and not of those entered in any third party Social Vendor tool.
All comment types can be replied to in order to create a collaborative thread based on responses from other users.
As you are viewing any comment, below the comment, a Reply button/link is shown.
Comments persist indefinitely in the BITeamwork system unless:
Comments can be deleted by only the user who created the comment. Once the comment is deleted it is removed from all viewable areas of the the dashboard, table cell, etc.
RSS Feeds allow dashboard comments to be leveraged by other applications such as Microsoft Office to consume information about dashboard comments without requiring an account to log in to the Enterprise Business Intelligence application. These XML based Feeds are a industry standard for distributing up-to-date news and information about one or more subjects; in this case dashboard comments and collaboration.
Users can access a Dashboard's comments RSS Feed by opening the BITeamwork pop-up window and clicking on the RSS Feed icon on the View All tab.
Doing so will open a new window/tab in the browser with the respective Dashboard Comments.
If you observe the URL in the browser window for the RSS Feed you may notice the dashboard name is present along with some other details. The last segment of the URL provides the ability to restrict the number of records returned in the RSS Feed. This can be helpful if attempting to display comments in a persistent fashion on a dashboard which could be accomplished in Oracle BI 11g by using a Narrative view for example.
At the top of the Business Intelligence application web page, the BITeamwork Administrator has the ability to turn on and off a banner that indicates which enviornment a user is currently operating within. This simple and unobtrusive banner is referred to as the Environment Eye.
A user has no control over the Environment Eye. It is simple an indicator to your current environment (i.e. Development, Test, SIT, QA, etc.). Its intent is to prevent mis-development or mis-directed activity if environments a user is working in are confused.
Environment Eye is typically used in all environments except for Production in which case it would obstruct the clean representation of the Business Intelligence application and portal.
The Splash Page pop-up window is a global means within the Business Intelligence Application to display current alerts , information, and direction to all end-users.
The BITeamwork Administrator controls the ability to turn on and off, or schedule a Splash Page, in order to display global information. The Splash Page may contain HTML content such as images and hyperlinks. If a user dismisses a splash page for the day, but then the administrator makes a modification to the splash page within that same day then the user will again see the splash page as it has potentially been reloaded with new content.
An organization that has implemented Oracle BI 11g for the first time or has upgraded from a previous version of the tool may wish to provide training and other information about the new implementation to end-users. A Content Management System such as MS SharePoint or Oracle WebCenter may be used to house training documents etc. However, a Splash Page could be scheduled to show (pop-up) at the home page and login page of the dashboard portal as a user accesses the Business Intelligence application during the project Go-Live. The Administration may create the content of the Splash Page so that it contains links to the SharePoint CMS site for training documentation, and perhaps a short video welcoming the end-users to the new BI systems.
Once the end-user has read the message(s) from the Splash Page and/or accessed the links they can then choose to close the Splash Page and continue on to the BI portal having now been explicitly informed within the BI application itself.
When a user creates a Dashboard, View, or Cell Comment with the Enterprise Edition of BITeamwork they have the ability (if the user's privileges permit) to notify a User or Application Role about a comment. Once the notified User(s) and/or Application Role(s) for which the comment are selected and the comment submitted, the user(s) will receive an email (requires Oracle BI Delivers to be configured) and a dashboard alert. This alert is pushed through the native Oracle BI 11g infrastructure and does not use any custom emailing mechanism etc. The notified user(s) are given this comment notification to suggest priority and a call-to-action on their part.
Regardless of the comment notification assignee(s) the comment is still available to any users having access to the dashboard, or assigned privileges to the comment, once the comment is submitted.