According to tibco (2017), flat dashboards (err… most probably, they are referring to BI) are killing analytics. When it comes to data visualization technologies, most vendors offer similar insights, along with graphing and storytelling functionality. What you most often see are screens with two or three panels that have a nice looking graph or two. If you click on the graph or adjust the controls, the visualization may change. It’s not bad. You can explore simple data sets, usually those stored in a spreadsheet table. You get fast results. You might even apply a statistical function or two. These dashboards are fundamentally fat. If you had magic virtual reality glasses and could pull the dashboard of the screen and look at the way it was made, you might see an inch or two of data and analytics behind each panel. If you want to change the data used or adjust the analytic, you go back to the spreadsheet or to the statistics package that calculated the analytic.
Flat dashboards provide a limited amount of insight. Usually, when fat dashboard technology is used in a company, it becomes a form of reporting, offering static information. The result is a proliferation of low-value visualizations that analyze small sets of data for individuals or groups. In a typical company, there could be hundreds or thousands of these low-value reports, which leads to a management and maintenance nightmare. Furthermore, because reports are uncoordinated, ad-hoc, and based on tiny slices of whatever-data-is-on-hand, they often lack a level of correctness and completeness, which canlead to incorrect conclusions and business mayhem. The old adage “garbage in, garbage out” too often applies to fat dashboards.