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Cover image for Trying to Nail Jelly to the Tree
Dusty R
Dusty R

Posted on

Trying to Nail Jelly to the Tree

Does a moving target in IT make you nuts?

When a developer tool changes every month, do you get lost?

When is too much progress too much?

Let me tell you about my user experiences with Power BI in the last six months.

I call it churn.

Every month Microsoft releases a new version of Power BI.

Great I say.

But wait...

I cannot rely on my old knowledge about how the tool works, I have to relearn it each month.

They make real nice videos and release notes about all the changes.

But changes that move features, menus, and user clickable area around, it feels like I start all over again learning every month. Kind of a "Groundhogs Day" repeating itself.

Lets inspect this situation a little more closely.

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I agree with making progress by creating new features for a tool or enhancing the functionality, fixing bugs.

But at what cost?

All of this came to a head when I went to a SQL Saturday in Redmond and one of the tracks I picked was about advanced features in Power BI.

The presenter was a well known expert, book author, blogger, and lecturer about Power BI.

He gave a quick introduction with PowerPoint and then it was no more slides.

Demo time!

So the presenter proceeded to try to demo live how to make some very nice graphs and dashboards.

I say try.

Every time he tried to find a particular control or button or what ever, he failed.

He was getting REAL frustrated.

What are power users at your client's office suppose to do? They cannot take time every month to relearn the tool, they have real work to do.

So much for self service BI.

The last time the presenter had practiced the demo was a few weeks before the SQL Saturday meeting.

In that middle time, Microsoft had released a new version of Power BI.

What chance do us mere mortals have if the expert struggles.

A few people in the audience had just used the newest version and shouted out some help every time the presenter got stuck.

The churn got him.

It was like he had goggles on.

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Rebuttals I have heard

I mentioned this whole subject of my frustration with the churn to another developer, and his reaction was, oh well.

That is not an answer.

What do you think about the churn?

What should Microsoft do to help developers get up to speed each month?

How can we as developers pass on this new monthly knowledge to our clients?

I will leave you with this:

They say, "The early bird gets the worm". I say look what happened to the worm when he got up early :}

Top comments (1)

futbolanalysr profile image
Futbol AnalysR

I know this is an old post, but personally I have had no issues with the changes in Bi. The changes haven't been as big as they were maybe a year ago, but things have improved massively in the last 12 months that this tool has moved forward a lot! I always look forward to new updates and can't wait for the next one :)

Timeless DEV post...

How to write a kickass README

Arguably the single most important piece of documentation for any open source project is the README. A good README not only informs people what the project does and who it is for but also how they use and contribute to it.

If you write a README without sufficient explanation of what your project does or how people can use it then it pretty much defeats the purpose of being open source as other developers are less likely to engage with or contribute towards it.