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Playing with the Firefox XBRL Viewer Add On

I have been playing around with the Firefox XBRL Viewer add on.  There are lots of documents one can fiddle with on this RSS feed.

But the most interesting XBRL instance I am seeing is the SEC Model that I created.  You can get to that document here: http://xbrl.squarespace.com/storage/secmodel/2010-11-01/abc-20101231.xml.

While the viewer leaves a lot to be desired, it does provide very good clues what working with XBRL will be like some day.

One particularly good feature of this Firefox XBRL Viewer add on is the ability to jump between hypercubes. To try this using the SEC XBRL Model filing:

  1. Load the XBRL instance above by pasting it into your Firefox browser (after you install the add on).
  2. Go to the balance sheet (104000 - Statement - Statement of Financial Position, Classified) Network.
  3. Go to the line item on the balance sheet "Common Stock, Value, Issued".
  4. Click on that concept and a dialog box appears.
  5. Click on the funky looking link which reads http://www.abc.com/role/ClassesOfCommonStock
  6. Notice how you jump to a new hypercube!

You can try the same thing for a number of other hypercubes which are connected to each other. That was one of the points of the SEC XBRL Model filing, to point out these sorts of connections.

The fact that you can navigate from one hypercube (referred to as [Table]s in the US GAAP Taxonomy) will help people creating taxonomies to construct better taxonomies (i.e. with these relations properly articulated).  It will also help business users grasp the value of XBRL.

Experiment with some of the other XBRL instances in that RSS feed.  Each document is there for a reason.

Imagine when:

  • You can combine two or more XBRL instances, say for several SEC XBRL filings and be able to compare them using a tool like this dynamic Firefox XBRL Viewer.
  • You can do this sort of slicing and dicing in Excel, leveraging Excels features to move information around and XBRL's features to automatically grab information from business reports of all sorts.
  • You can create XBRL instances and XBRL taxonomies using an interface similar to the Firefox add on.

If you have not fiddled around with the Firefox add on, I would encourage you to do so.

 

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Reader Comments (1)

Hi
When I try to open your xml in firefox with the XBRL Addon I get an error:
Cannot read file: file:///Y:/XBRL/abc/abc-20101231.xsd.
What do I miss?

Kind regards Paul
August 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Baden

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