FNT expert: Peer Dierolf, Product Manager
FNT GraphicCenter is the new visualization application from FNT that makes it easy to visualize and analyze infrastructure and service data. It is fully integrated into the FNT Command Platform and based on yWorks technology. Peer Dierolf, Product Manager at FNT, explains what makes this visualization application stand out.
What exactly is FNT GraphicCenter?
Customers using the FNT Command Platform typically have a huge amount of complex and tightly interwoven information relating to their network infrastructure, IT infrastructure, or data center infrastructure. Identifying specific dependencies in this wealth of infrastructure data can often be difficult. That’s exactly where the new FNT GraphicCenter component comes in. It enables users to obtain targeted information from the data in an effective and efficient manner. Data can be visualized in a variety of ways, revealing hidden dependencies within the infrastructure. Users can access specific data sources, select data according to their needs, and visualize items individually using filters and color coding. This functionality allows businesses to gain maximum added value from their information.
What are the situations and challenges where FNT GraphicCenter can be used? Can you give us a few practical examples?
The configurable visualization concept behind GraphicCenter means it can be used in any situation where it’s important to be able to see all aspects at a glance. Here are a few examples:
• When planning upcoming maintenance, users can immediately identify which services within the infrastructure will be affected.
• As part of initiatives to improve or strengthen services, users can ascertain the nature and design of the network at a glance.
• In data center management, users can check which areas have redundant connections to the power supply and identify other areas where redundancy needs to be improved.
So GraphicCenter makes visualization possible across the infrastructure?
Yes, exactly. Rule-based visualization, such as with FNT GraphicCenter, is generally helpful in all scenarios where users need to gain fast and comprehensive insight into a situation and come up with a response. Automatically updating visualization enables patterns or deviations from a defined standard to be spotted very quickly. This kind of fast insight provides the basis for targeted and efficient resolution of a situation, e.g., by finding and rectifying problems caused by incorrect configuration.
Why is the visualization application a worthwhile addition to the FNT Command Platform?
In a nutshell, because data visualization in conjunction with the FNT Command Platform is the logical next step to keep pace with digital transformation and further optimize both products and services. Data itself is clearly an important asset, but it’s no longer the only success factor. In today’s agile world, businesses and public agencies need to be able to gain insights from data as efficiently as possible. This is a prerequisite for the kind of knowledge-based decisions that underpin business success. And that’s exactly what FNT GraphicCenter supports – straight out of the box.
How does FNT GraphicCenter differ from other visualization tools?
Up to now, businesses have often visualized their data either statically via graphics programs, which are not really designed for that, or through proprietary visualization tools, which are frequently restricted to just a few use cases and are costly to develop and maintain.
GraphicCenter combines the best of both worlds: automatic, dynamic, and rule-based visualization of data and direct manual configuration of the rules by the user. The user defines, configures, and interprets the visualized data. The application provides support for repetitive tasks, such as creating layouts and formatting the visualization – and unlike manual visualization, it always uses the most up-to-date data from the data source. Used together with the FNT Command Platform, that source is the data on the documented IT, data center, or network infrastructure. It’s the perfect blend of human and machine capabilities.
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