Impressions From My First Day Of Using #PowerBI | 3danim8’s Blog

Microsoft PowerBI
Microsoft PowerBI

This is a very interesting read if you are evalutating PowerBI against Tableau.

Spoiler alert:

If it takes a 140 pages of instructions to build a dashboard in a day, there is something seriously wrong.

-Ken Black

And having worked on a number of PowerBI projects and an even larger number of Tableau projects, I am inclined to agree.


Impressions From My First Day Of Using #PowerBI


Let me start this article with a definitive statement: I am definitely qualified to write this article about Power BI. My qualifications do not have anything to do with that software product, however. My work history and knowledge of Microsoft products are the reason I feel that I am qualified to write this piece.

There is no question that my 30 years of experience using Microsoft products puts me in the category of someone who knows what they are talking about. I might even be considered a “highly-trained monkey worker” when it comes to using Microsoft products. If someone were to ask me what is my most refined analytics skill set, I’d say it is working in Excel and writing custom VBA codes. Those are a couple of reasons why I feel that I am qualified to offer an opinion on Power BI.

I have done more scientific, analytical, and numerical work using Microsoft products than I have done in all other computer-based tools I have ever used, even when all the other tools are combined. I have created hundreds (quite possibly thousands) of Excel worksheets, graphics, and many multi-thousand line VBA codes. I have programmed in too many computer languages for me to accurately remember, and a lot of it was done using Microsoft compilers.

For these reasons, what I am about to say should be considered an opinion that has some merit. I would also like to say that I have a huge amount of respect for Microsoft, so the statements I make in this article were very carefully considered before I wrote them and they are not intended to be mean-spirited. I hereby reserve the right to have my opinions altered.

I have always written articles in this blog with candor, honesty, passion, and with a vision of the way I see things. I am not afraid of telling the truth, even when the truth hurts.

My Motivations For This Article

I really only have two motivations for this article. First, I like to document my thoughts at various points in time so that I can look back and see where I was in my understanding over time. I like to be able to look in the rear-view mirror to see where I was, knowing where I am now.

I don’t have any connection to any computer software firms, so my statements are simply my opinions that are based on a continuous work history in both science and business over a long time period. This article was written for me, and only me. I just decided to share it with you.

Secondly, I like to be a person that continuously improves. I like the challenge of learning new tools and concepts and I like sharing my insights. I also like to help other people learn by writing these articles. People who know me have come to realize that I am not afraid to try new things.

Finally, I know that my opinions in this article may not be popular with a lot of people. There are many wonderful, highly intelligent people working for Microsoft, consulting firms and companies that are using Power BI to do great things. To these people, I applaud your efforts. However, for me to begin using Power BI would require that Power BI be a much better tool than the tools I already use. If you want to find out the answer to whether this is the case, you will need to read this article.



Impressions From My First Day Of Using #PowerBI

Life is a funny thing. One day you are up, the next day you are down. The only question remaining is this: Will Power BI be able to recover from today’s disaster enough to change my opinion of its value?


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Eric Axelrod

President & Chief Architect at DIGR
I have helped companies bring new data driven products to market, drive efficiency out of their supply chain, execute strategic plans, and drive top line and bottom line growth by enabling every business function with actionable analytics. I can transform a business which is lacking critical insight into an agile, strategic, data driven organization.

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