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  • What's New in TIBCO Spotfire® 10.7

    Table of Contents


    Spotfire 10.7 introduces native support for Python data functions, opening up for use in the Python universe of machine learning algorithms tightly integrated with the visual analytics of Spotfire.

    Also available in this release are a number of enhancements to the Map Chart such as zoom and pan with auto-zoom and an easier way to position images over maps. This release also solves the highly voted idea from the Ideas portal, ?Hide analysis pages for consumer users?. For geospatial use cases with streaming data, this release provides the exciting capability to calculate geographical distances using the Great-circle Distance function, which, for example, can help in transportation use cases to identify when shipments are approaching their destination, etc. There are also improvements in data access related to SAP BW and Salesforce, as well as other smaller, but valuable, improvements.

    Watch the What's New presentation:


    Back to the What's new in Spotfire landing page.

    Advanced Analytics

    Support for Python data functions in Spotfire Analyst

    Spotfire Analyst now natively supports Python data functions. This means that you can use Python libraries for math, statistics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to build data functions for exploratory data analysis, dashboards or analytical applications in Spotfire. The Spotfire data function mechanism provides a tight integration between visual and advanced analytics so that a user can drive the computations and display of results interactively through a selection of parameters, or by marking in visualizations. Results from the data function can include the addition of data to the analysis or enhancing existing data or visualizations. The animation below shows an example of using the python NLTK library to calculate the sentiment of customer reviews, and plotting the review location and the sentiment on a map. It also shows how you can use the Spotfire subsets capability to compare the selected review's sentiment scores to the scores for all reviews.

    Note: Before Spotfire 10.7 it was already possible to use Python data functions through the data function extension available on the TIBCO Community. In Spotfire 10.7, there is no longer a need to use this extension since Python data functions are now supported natively in Spotfire.

    Using Python and Python packages

    Spotfire Analyst now comes with a bundled Python engine, and a user can add and use Python packages as desired. In order to import a Python package, so that the functions provided by the package can be used in a Spotfire data function,  one can use the pip python feature. This is a convenient way for individual users to add the Python packages they need, whenever they need it. For example, using a command prompt at the location of the Python interpreter:

     python.exe -m pip install tensorflow


    Governed Python package management

    While it is convenient for individual users to add the packages they like to use as outlined in the earlier section, a data science manager or administrator may be concerned about governing which packages are used in their organization, in order to standardize and harmonize package usage among the users. Spotfire makes it easier to ensure that all Python users use the same packages and the same versions of these packages. Administrators or superusers can control which packages and versions of packages that are automatically available to other users within their organization, by providing a way of embedding Python packages in Spotfire .spk files.  This means that the regular package deployment mechanism on the Spotfire server can be used to deploy Python packages to users; if needed, with group-level granularity. 

    To achieve this, Spotfire comes with a Python package called spotfire.zip which makes it possible to specify a set of Python packages to package into a .spk file. This is done using the pip utility and a requirements.txt configuration file, like this:

     python.exe -m spotfire.spk packages --analyst myspk.spk requirements.txt


    The file requirements.txt defines the Python packages to include in the myspk.spk file.


    An administrator can then deploy the created .spk file on the relevant deployment areas of the Spotfire server, which means that the regular deployment mechanism of Spotfire will be used to push the packages to the users.


     for a summary of how to build and deploy an .spk file containing Python packages.

    Read this top-level article that links to more resources concerning package management, frequently asked questions, and examples of using Python Data functions in Spotfire.


     as he walks through the setup, execution, and governance of Python for your advanced analytics needs.

    Visual Analytics

    Show/hide pages for consumer users

    There is now a property on Spotfire pages that lets an author specify whether a page should be visible in Viewing mode. This means that pages can be hidden from consumer users, which is useful, for example, if the pages are works in progress, or if they are used for other purposes and are not of interest to consumer users. Hidden pages may still be part of a Prepared PDF report, and may be navigated using action controls or scripts. This improves the flexibility of authors. For example, it is possible to include additional pages in a PDF export that are not visible to consumer users in the regular analysis or to provide a custom page navigation flow.

    As covered in the Developer section, there is an API available that provides additional flexibility for using this feature.

    In the animation below we can see a typical Spotfire dashboard and how the user selects to hide the page called 'Management details'. It is still available for users that are authors, that can use the editing mode of Spotfire. But when switching to Viewing mode, the page tab for 'Management details' is no longer visible. This means that consumer users, who are not able to enter Editing mode, will not see the page tab for the page 'Management details'.



    More governed page navigation

    Authors can now disable the page navigation options altogether, meaning that the only way to navigate an analysis for a consumer user is through action buttons or links and scripts. This gives the author more control over the page navigation flow which is useful when building analytical applications where it is important that the user adheres to a specific workflow.



    Page navigation design changes

    The page navigation bar now has a new design. Also, the globe icon showing connection status has been moved to the status bar at the bottom of the application.

    Calculate geo-spatial distance for streaming data

    It is now possible to use the great_circle_distance function to calculate geospatial distance between two points on the earth. This makes it easier to, for example, calculate expected arrival time of a boat or provide a visual alert when a truck is approaching a destination. 

    The animation below shows a bar chart where the bars indicate the distance to Boston Logan airport for the tracked aircrafts.


    The custom expression used on the y-axis of the bar chart is:

     6371 * great_circle_distance(lastval([Latitude]), lastval([Longitude]), 42.3635267631791, -71.0097947057495) as [Distance in km]


    Read here to learn more about this and other functions with streaming data.

    Use the Modulus operator for streaming data

    Spotfire now supports the modulus operator also for streaming data.

    Concatenate strings using the + operator for streaming data

    It is now possible to concatenate strings using the + operator also for streaming data. This means one can use expressions like: "FlightID: " + firstval([FlightId]) + " Speed: " + lastval([speed]) for example for providing extra information in labels like in the below screenshot.


    Pan and zoom with auto-zoom

    The map chart now supports zooming in/out as well as panning, when auto-zoom is enabled.

    Position the image layer with drag & drop

    Authors can now set the position of an Image Layer on top of the Map layer by moving and resizing the image on the map.

    Image layer transparency

    Authors can now configure the transparency for an Image layer in a map chart.

    Line & border styling for the feature layer

    Authors can now configure the coloring of lines and borders for Feature layers in map charts using Business Author. Prior to this release, this capability was only available using the Analyst and Desktop clients.


    Data Access

    SAP BW constrained Kerberos delegation support

    The Spotfire connector for SAP BW has been updated to the latest security libraries of SAP. With that, the connector now supports constrained Kerberos delegation on Spotfire web clients and in Spotfire Analyst clients.

    Azure Database for PostgreSQL support

    The Spotfire connector for PostgreSQL now supports accessing data from Azure Database for PostgreSQL. This means you can now establish an SSL connection and push direct interactive queries from Spotfire into your PostgreSQL instance on Azure. As always with connectors, you have the option to combine push-down queries with the extraction of row-level data up-front or on-demand.

    Salesforce connector updates

    The Spotfire connector for Salesforce has been updated to support the selection of more columns in the same view.





    API to show or hide pages for consumer users

    The Spotfire C# API now allows you to programmatically, from a custom extension or script, inspect and change the visibility of a page in Viewing mode. This means that pages can be shown or hidden from consumer users dependent on the context in which the analysis is opened, for example, who the logged-in user is, or what the screen resolution of the client device is.

    Uniquely identify visualizations in integration tests

    It is now possible to identify Spotfire visualizations in the HTML DOM in a unique and persistent way. This is useful when creating integration tests in Selenium (or similar testing frameworks) and having them run in a predictable fashion. Read more here.




    Support Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8

    Spotfire Server now supports deployment on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.


    Published the TIBCO Spotfire® Server and Environment Security document within the Product Documentation. This document is targeted at security professionals for an easier overview of the Spotfire Server environment and security capabilities.

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