The first in a series of "mini-posts" detailing new functionality in Oracle Endeca Information Discovery 3.0 - Today: Attribute Based Navigation Configuration
As mentioned last week, there are enhancements both great and small coming in OEID 3.0. None smaller (and proportionally greater) than the ability to select individual attributes in your guided navigation configuration, rather than attribute groups.
For those of us who have been working with the product since its inception, this was a feature that existed in the first three or 4 versions of OEID Studio (then called Discovery Framework) and was widely utilized. With the advent of Attribute Groups, first as a part of Studio then as a fully fledged part of the MDEX, this configuration capability was removed.
Ah, the "good old days" with DF 1.4
While this change forced best practices in terms of re-usability across pages and allowed for some performance gains inside the MDEX, it removed a lot of flexibility and would force applications into a fair amount of configuration duplication. For example, it's usually standard practice for a given record type in Endeca Server to have at least 2 attribute groups. One, for guided navigation, the other for record list display in a visualization component like Results Grid.
With the OEID 3.0 release, the power to include these attributes in an adhoc fashion will return and give power users greater flexibility when designing their navigation experience, not to mention when you're still developing your application. You'll still want Attribute Groups for increased performance and re-usability but the return of this capability is most welcome. It sounds like such a small thing but for anyone who has had to go and create an attribute group just to have 2 or 3 attributes show up in a guided navigation portlet, it's huge.
*Note: Don't worry, in 3.0, the navigation configuration is way slicker than the 1.4 version pictured above.