Last Thursday when Microsoft launched Vista, Office 2007, and Exchange 2007, a number of other products came along for the ride, including some that are quite a ways from availability. One such is Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 for which a CTP was released today:
Microsoft Corp. today announced the release of the first community technology preview (CTP) for its integrated performance management application Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server 2007. Scheduled for general availability in mid-2007, Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 brings together next-generation monitoring, analytics and planning capabilities in a complete performance management application. Beginning today, customers can visit http://connect.microsoft.com/site/sitehome.aspx?siteid=181 to download the first bits of code and test the product’s capabilities in a real-world business environment.
Sometimes you just have to laugh. Reading this you might justifiably think that PerformancePoint had something to do with computer system performance management, but actually it’s a Business Intelligence (BI) offering. And while one hears “get the bits” more often than necessary, “download the first bits of code” seems to have odd connotations. Things improve though:
Office PerformancePoint Server CTP 1 will combine the planning, budgeting, forecasting and financial consolidation capabilities of the product code-named “BizSharp” and the scorecarding functionality of Microsoft Office Business Scorecard Manager Server 2005. CTP 2, scheduled for early 2007, will incorporate the functionality of CTP 1 and analytics from ProClarity 6.2. Microsoft plans to release either one or two additional CTPs before the general availability of the product scheduled for mid-2007.
Microsoft acquired ProClarity in April and in case it’s not clear, PerformancePoint Server 2007 replaces Scorecard Manager Server 2005. The net is that PerformancePoint is Microsoft’s try for the BI market building on the strengths of SQL Server as the underlying database and Office as the front-end. The PerformancePoint Server website has more details.