This is yet another iteration of the interactive information hypercube viewer that I keep fiddling with. See this blog post for information on prior iterations.
This version is a major step forward because it actually works! You can grab information about this prototype here. Read that overview document to understand what is going on.
Note that this version implements the financial reporting logical model (draft) that the XBRL International Taxonomy Architecture Working Group is working on. The point of the prototype is to test that logical model so that I can provide input to that group.
I would encourage you to grab the Excel prototype application and check it out. See that overview page for a link to a ZIP file which contains the prototype. If you fiddle with the application what I am hoping that you see is that the XBRL instance information renders quite nicely and is definitely very readable by humans. The rendering is driven by two things: the XBRL instance/XBRL taxonomy DTS (discoverable taxonomy set) information and logic in the Excel application which takes advantage of the financial reporting logical model.
This works even better than I had anticipated. I always thought the rendering would be 98% of what one might want, the user would have to do 2% of the work to adjust the slicers, rows, and columns. But, I was able to get 100% of what I wanted automatically. The roll forward is not quite what I desire but I know how to fix that without too much effort.
Don't be fooled by what might appear as the simplicity of what you see. This is not a simplistic implementation of XBRL. In fact, it is quite robust. The US GAAP Taxonomy and SEC XBRL reporting can follow this model. The model is simple, not simplistic. That is the idea: make it simple and easy to use.
I am getting more and more evidence and insight into what an XBRL application for financial reporting can and should look like. I am seeing that it is very possible to hide XBRL in the background.
The XBRL International Taxonomy Architecture Working Group is looking for software vendors to experiment with the financial reporting logical model. If you are interested, send me an email or contact XBRL International for more information. This is a great opportunity to not only experiment and learn more about XBRL.