Microsoft PerformancePoint Server: A First Look

I spent a good part of a day last week digging into the PerformancePoint Server Virtual Machine that was recently released by Microsoft.  (See  You’ll have to sign up for the CTP to grab the VHD.)

There are two sets of [somewhat malformed — OK, they are Beta] lab exercises, which I attempted to get through, and almost finished before running into some irreconcilable difference with the instructions.  My first impressions are:

    •  This is really complex and difficult stuff to get your arms around.  Despite the Microsoft claims that “business users will have no problem understanding it”, no one real is going to get it easily, IMHO.  I’m wondering what level of training will be required to find the entire platform useful.
    • There is a *lot* to it.  It’s not just complex, it is very broad in what it can do.  Financial modeling is at its core, but there is also scorecarding and quite a bit more included as well.
    • It lives on top of Sharepoint (duh, you may have known that), so from an infrastructure perspective, it is maintainable with Sharepoint.

I’m looking forward to learning much more about this platform.  Despite the complexities mentioned above, I was very impressed with the intentions behind it. 

Have a thought or opinion?