Building Business Intelligence With Drupal Feeds

Building Business Intelligence With Drupal Feeds

date: 2016-02-21 by Zakaria al Azhar

Introduction

Actuaries rely for their projects on vast reservoirs of news,articles,blogs and other online sources. Because of the dfficulty of properly searching, finding and assessing these unstructured data actuaries may not draw upon these vast reservoirs of information. This can ultimately lead to poorly-informed decision making or falling behind in knowledge.

In this article I'll describe how to add a news section with Drupal Feeds that collects (business) information from different webresources and filters the information that contain specific (actuarial) topics. Subsequently the filtered information is subdivided in different categories. This ensures that the information is clearly presented and easily accessible.

Drupal 7 Requirements

Feeds
Views
CTools
 

Process

Step 1
Create a list of interesting RSS feeds.

Step 2
Create a  Contenttype in which you want to save the data that is imported from these RSS feeds. We've created a "News" contenttype with two textfields:

1) Body.       The body field will be mapped to the RSS content.
2) Rss_Link  This field will containt the url of the (news) article.

Step 3
Configure the Feeds module such that it will import the RSS feeds and saves the data into nodes of the above contenttype:

a) Add a Feeds importer for each feed you've defined in step 1. Go to "structure", choose "feeds importer", insert a name, and save.
b) After adding the new feeds importer you'll be forwarded to its configuration. Below an overview of the changes we've made in the default settings:

The most important settings are related to the processor in which we have set the content type to use and the mapping of the rss fields to the node fields (see also step 2).

c) Define the url of the feed importer by navigating to "yourwebsite/import", where you get a list of the created feedimporters. For each listed feed importer you can set the url of the feed.  Subsequently test the feedimporter by clicking on import:

If the configuration has been successful then the rss will be imported as nodes of the type "rsstype".

Step 4
Until now we have only configured a "datawarehouse" that stores unstuctured data, which is automatically imported from several feed urls. With Views we create structure and "intelligence" in the imported content by filtering for specific business keywords. We'll take the actuarial keyword "pension" as example:

Repeat the process for every other keyword you have

Step 5

Present the data into (keyword) categories by using blocks: