BLOG:  Digital Financial Reporting

This is a blog for information relating to digital financial reporting.  This blog is basically my "lab notebook" for experimenting and learning about XBRL-based digital financial reporting.  This is my brain storming platform.  This is where I think out loud (i.e. publicly) about digital financial reporting. This information is for innovators and early adopters who are ushering in a new era of accounting, reporting, auditing, and analysis in a digital environment.

Much of the information contained in this blog is synthasized, summarized, condensed, better organized and articulated in my book XBRL for Dummies and in the chapters of Intelligent XBRL-based Digital Financial Reporting. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Entries in Firefox XBRL add on (2)

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:

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
  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.


Game Changer: XBRL Viewer Add on for Firefox

I was just made aware of something which will change the XBRL landscape.  Someone has created an XBRL add on for Firefox which allows you to view any XBRL instance or XBRL taxonomy. The XBRL add on lets you drag and drop the dimensions, reorganizing them like a pivot table!  The really cool thing is that the add on is free.

To get Firefox and the XBRL Add on and start viewing XBRL instances and XBRL taxonomies differently:

  1. Get and install Firefox. I installed Firefox on my Mac.
  2. Get the add on. Be sure to get Firefox first.  Simply copy the link into the address of your newly installed Firefox browser: 
  3. Get some XBRL instances.  Here is an RSS feed with about 53 XBRL instances.  Or, try this list of SEC XBRL filings. (Open the link, click on Detail the "Detail" column which takes you to the SEC web site, and then click on the XBRL instance.) Here is a direct link to one SEC XBRL instance, Coca Cola.

Again, be sure you are in Firefox when you open the XBRL instance or XBRL taxonomy.

So what does this mean?  Well, one thing it means is that it is easier to see data modeling errors within XBRL taxonomies which drive the XBRL instances.

I am sure this means other things but my mind is not working right now because this is so exciting.  Two things I wish: (a) I wish there were a plugin for Excel like this and, (b) I wish you could combine two or more XBRL instances and do comparisons.

More later.