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Simple method to enable proper drill-down for shifted calendar periods

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000020082D
Original Publication Date: 2003-Oct-23
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Oct-23
Document File: 4 page(s) / 114K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Algorithm to prepare calendar information to enable proper drill-down for overlapping period boundaries for calendars that may include a shifted start date and non-gregorian period settings.

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Simple method to enable proper drill-down for shifted calendar periods

It is common practice for organizations to keep track of their business by using alternative internal calendars instead of the Gregorian calendar. In the Gregorian calendar each year is defined in terms of days, weeks, months, and quarters, each with rigidly defined period lengths.

An example for an alternative internal calendar is the fiscal calendar. It is defined by the date when the fiscal year starts and may incorporate a greater degree of flexibility for the definition of period lengths. For example, the third month of the Gregorian calendar is March 1 - March 31, but in a particular fiscal calendar the third month could be August 15 - September 13, that is both the position of the fiscal month as well as the length of the fiscal month compared to the Gregorian calendar are different.

Analysis of business data, for example when using multi-dimensional analysis tools, is made difficult through the overlapping of period boundaries, that is, the fact that weeks may belong to more than one month or more than one quarter, which can cause discrepancies. For example, when drilling down sales data for the month September 2003, the weekly view should contain values for September 28 - 30, but not for October 1 - 4, although the week contains the values for September 28 - October 4.

Providing proper internal calendar period definitions thus is essential to enable better business analysis. Each day of the Gregorian calendar needs to be mapped to the internal calendar, and internal calendar attributes need to be determined regarding weeks, months, and quarters.

In addition it may be desired to map Gregorian calendar periods to non-Gregorian period settings. A calendar with non-Gregorian periods will be specified by providing the number of quarters, the length of the week, and the number and length of base periods.

The algorithm described below supports a simple determination of calendar information based on, for Gregorian calendars, two pieces of information, the weekday of the first day, and the length of the months.

The following period hierarchy is supported:

Periodlevel P5: defaults to the year in a Gregorian calendar (i.e. 365-366 days) Periodlevel P4 : defaults to the quarters in a Gregorian calendar ( i.e. 4 periods per year) Periodlevel P3 : defaults to the months in a Gregorian calendar (i.e. 12 periods per year) Periodlevel P2 : defaults to the weeks in a Gregorian calendar (i.e. week is 7 days) Periodlevel P1 : days

The following variables may be provided by the user: the length of a week (wl), the

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weekday of the first day (wdf) of the year, the number of quarters (qnr), the number of monthly periods n, and the lengths of n monthly periods (mli with i from 1..n)

Note: all calculations are integer calculations / is used for div operations, e.g. 7 / 3 = 2 % is used for modulo operations, e.g. 7 % 3 = 1

The following elements are calculated for a...