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What’s New in the TIBCO Spotfire 4.0 Platform

The TIBCO Spotfire 4.0 release contains several new features to make it easier for users to build interactive dashboards that can provide quick information at a glance.

The TIBCO Spotfire 4.0 release contains several new features to make it easier for users to build interactive dashboards that can provide quick information at a glance. The navigation and interaction of the product has also been improved, and ways to collaborate around an analysis by sharing information with other people has been added. Last but not least, the entire product has been given a brand new visual style making it possible to create clean and crisp analyses and dashboards.

Information at a glance

Calculated Values

What: Dynamically display single values in text areas that respond to filtering and parameter changes.

Why: Look at the most important numbers first before diving into more details.


Conditional Icons

What: Dynamically calculated icons that respond to filtering and parameter changes.

Why: Indicate change, comparisons to targets and highlight important events.



What: Dynamically calculated sparklines that respond to filtering and parameter changes.

Why: Show at a glance whether a metric is trending down, up or whether it varies a lot.


Graphical Tables

What: Calculated values, conditional icons and sparklines in one compact table broken down by some category.

Why: Visually show everything you need to know on a single screen.


Look and feel

All new graphical profile

What: New style for Spotfire visualizations and pages. Fewer lines and frames. Toolbars moved out of the way. Larger visualization titles.

Why: Improves the look and feel of the page and puts the data in focus. Easier to blend in with portal pages and other applications.


Popover over filter panel

What: New popover panel mode for the filter panel as an alternative to docking

Why: Use space on the screen more efficiently by not showing the filter panel when it's not needed.


Popover legend

What: New popover mode for the legend as alternative to docking

Why: Use space on the screen more efficiently by not showing the legend for a visualization when it's not needed.


Individual control over axis label visibility

What: Individual control over axis label visibility.

Why: Save space by hiding one axis label if the interpretation is obvious, without having to hide all axis labels.


More control over legend contents and placement

What: Turn on and off axis selectors and title for individual legend items. Dock legend left or right.

Why: Use space on the screen more efficiently by only showing what's necessary in the legend.


Fixed Size Layout

What: Constrain the visualization area to a specific height and width and use scrollbars or whitespace outside the visualizations to adapt to different screensizes.

Why: Create optimized Spotfire dashboards and applications for specific devices and screen resolutions.

Mix filters and controls on the page

What: Freely mix and match filters with other controls and calculated value displays.

Why: Keep filters and controls together to make them easier to find for the user.
Expose only the filters that are relevant and put them in an understandable context for the dashboard user.


Nicer looking tables

What: Cleaner and more display friendly tables without heavy headers. Scrollbars only show up when needed.

Why: Clean display with the data in focus.

Combine different slices of data on the same page

What: Limit each visualization by any combination of markings, filtering schemes and conditional expressions.

What: Show everything related to a single topic on one page regardless of if it requires different slices of the data.


Toolbars and Information

What: Toolbars and information about the analysis have moved to separate dialogs

Why: Focus on the data instead of on controls when they are not needed. Less technical for the end user.


Navigation and interaction


What: Add actions to icons and sparklines that moves you to a different page, applies a bookmark or executes a script.

What: Drill down or navigate to more details by clicking on an icon, a calculated value or a sparkline in a graphical table.


Page History Navigation

What: Single click to move backwards and forwards in the page history.

Why: Allow the users to go back to where they came from. Especially important when detailed information is shown on a different page and you want to get back to the overview.


Embed interactive controls

What: All new summary visualizations support expressions and properties that respond to user controls.

Why: Create one parameterized dashboard and give the user control over what to see instead of creating a hundred dashboards for different user needs.



Building dashboards

Preserve Information when Switching Visualizations

What: As much information as possible is carried over when switching from one visualization to another.

Why: Saves time when changing a visualization type after you've already done some configuration.

Change all fonts in one place

What: Apply a font or size change to all visualizations in the entire analysis.

Why: Saves time.

Easier access to toggling visualization features

What: Turn on and off visualization features from a right click menu inside the visualization.

Why: Improves ease of use since its possible to reach this functionality even when the title bar is hidden.

More predefined categorical coloring schemes

What: 4 pre-defined categorical coloring schemes.

Why: Easy to chose between a few categorical color schemes that look good and are readable.


Manage Document Color Schemes

What: Possible to delete and rename document color schemes.

Why: Easier to work with color schemes when you have many document color schemes to keep track of.


Better Defaults when creating visualizations

What : Date is used as the default column on the X-axis of a line chart if one exists. Row count is used as the default column for bar charts.

Why: Faster to get to a suitable visualization that can be modified. Easier to understand what the visualizations shows if the default visualization makes sense.

Toggle auto column additions off

What: Option to control whether or not new calculated or added columns should automatically show up in the table visualization or not.

Why: No surprising changes after deciding that the dashboard looks just right.

Analysis Previews

What: Analysis preview images are available when browsing for analyses in Spotfire Professional or Enterprise Player.

Why: Easier to find a specific analysis.


Control over table header font

What: Fonts can be set independently for table headers and section headers

Why: Dashboard designers can choose the header style that looks the best and is most readable in a given situation.



Share to tibbr®

What: Right click on any visualization or page and share the view on tibbr with a link back to the analysis

Why: Easy sharing of insights and findings.

Add tibbr® discussions to the analysis

What: Integrated tibbr discussions right in the analysis filtered to a particular subject.

Why: Discuss insights and findings with collegues directly in the analysis. Subscribe and get notified when someone posts a comment on an analysis you are interested in.


Embed dashboards in other web pages

What: One click access to HTML fragments that displays a Spotfire page that can be pasted directly into portals and other web pages.

Why: Put a link to the analysis in your corporate blog or wiki. Integrate Spotfire analysis displays into SharePoint WebPart and other portals.



Other enhancements

Export Footer

What: Include a footer when exporting or printing pages.

Why: Make it clear where the printout came from or indicate to the reader that the contents is confidential.

Stepped Line Charts

What: Draw the lines in line charts as step lines that only shows a change in value at the exact point where the value changed.

Why: Better representation of discrete data that avoids misleading the user by interpolating values in between data points.


Automation Services 4.0

What: New task added to remap Information Services catalogs and schemas during an automated Library import.

Why: Allow for the automation of migrating a Spotfire Information Model from a test to a production environment in instances when the test and production areas of the data source are in different database catalogs or schemas.


System requirement changes

TIBCO Spotfire 4.0

• Requires Microsoft .Net 4.0

– Old extensions written with Microsoft .Net 2.0 will continue to work without re-compilation

• Dropped support for Internet Explorer 6

TIBCO Spotfire Web Player 4.0

• Server

– Drop Support for Windows Server 2003

– Require Microsoft .Net 4.0

• Note: Old extensions written with Microsoft .Net 2.0 will continue to work without re-compilation

• Client

– Drop Support for Internet Explorer 6

– Latest versions of Firefox, Chrome and Safari.

TIBCO Spotfire Lead Discovery 4.0

• Base Requirements

– Microsoft .Net 4.0

– Microsoft .Net 2.0 (if chemistry component requires it)

• Renderers

– Drop Support for Accelrys Draw 3.0 and 3.1

• Editors

– Add support for editing substructures in 64 bit environments