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Microsoft SQL Server 2014 Business Intelligence Development Beginner’s Guide

I was very happy to hear a new book was released from Packt Publishing by my fellow MVP Reza Rad, I was even happier when I heard I have an opportunity to review it because I could not expect anything else than another superb content this time, too.

It stood to its promises!

The book, even though is marketed under the “Beginner’s Guide” moniker, is actually suitable for an intermediate Business Intelligence professional. Judge yourself: the book covers as advanced topics as:

  • Data Modeling using SSAS Multidimensional and Tabular with MDX and DAX
  • Manage Master Data with MDS
  • Reveal Knowledge Driven Data Quality with DQS
  • Understand prediction and Data Mining
  • Identify data patterns
  • Design Dashboards with PerformancePoint and Power View
  • Explore Power Query and Power Map as components of Power BI
  • Create powerful reports using Visual Studio


    I think this list speaks for itself, it is an impressive, unprecedented coverage of topics.

    A little more about the book: it is divided into sections as to first acknowledge the reader on what are the advantages to using a specific technology, then a short deeper dive into the exact usage example summed up into a detailed coverage of how a task was tackled and what would be readers’ take-aways. The book has high quality graphics and was read on my laptop as well as on Android tablet. All that makes this book a winner in absorbing a lot of technical content in short time plus make it stick in the head.

    The book references enough external resources in case one would like to explore any topic further. In my opinion the book serves as a huge time saver in getting familiar with the latest Microsoft BI offerings and would easily allow anybody, even new to Power BI or DQS enter a Proof of Concept mode or make a quick presentation for a project stakeholder.

    I liked the most the content on predictions and the cool visualizations that can be done with Power Map and Power View. My personal opinion, Power BI overall as a data visualization and analysis platform is just sassy!

    A few notes to a prospective reader: one needs MS Office 2013 installed, have access to Microsoft Server 2012, an active Azure account and preferably run the whole software suite on a Virtual Machine.

    Verdict: I am giving this book a 5 out 5 rating.

  • Posted on Friday, August 1, 2014 4:12 PM | Back to top

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