The second generation of the Dundas Dashboard business intelligence suite introduces an open API for developers in addition to new stubbing features for building dashboards more rapidly.

Dundas Dashboard 2.0 became generally available Monday. Dashboard is a unified Web-based solution that runs as a Silverlight application on Windows Servers.

Its API enables developers to customize or extend the product as they require, said Dundas director of marketing Ed Worsfold. “The API was part of the original design. We are coming from the component side [of the industry], and we know how to design things properly.”

Any ASP.NET application can be integrated with Dashboard; however, ASP.NET MVC applications are not supported by this release, he said.

Streamlining dashboard design is another focus of this release. The KPI stubbing feature allows for parallel-track development, so business intelligence professionals and database administrators can work independently, Worsfold explained. No actual data is required for building dashboards.

Version 2.0 supports new data sources such as Microsoft MS OLAP data structures, allowing developers to build dashboards for analyzing multidimensional data. Additionally, new datasets, data visualizations, templates and a new viewer control have been added.

Intelligence may also be accessed from more places. Dashboard 2.0 adds a SharePoint Web part and introduces a mash-up interface for end users to reuse existing KPIs and metrics, along with any associated visualizations.

Other end-user features are the ability to export dashboards for offline use, sharing links with team members, and a new annotation capability for adding analysis and context to reports.