This is perhaps the most powerful function in the Configurator. There are more than 30 needs or filters on the left side of this panel, for which you can either enter a choice manually, or choose from some pre-determined values. Some choices are binary (e.g. number of processors - 1 or 2) while for others there are a great many possible values (Processor Type alone has over 650 choices). Still others let you enter a value yourself (weight, battery life, number of bays, slots, price etc.). You can use a variety of filters to match your customer requirements, with a great deal of complexity. Or, you can ask the Configurator engine to find something very simple, yet time-consuming to locate......what is the best price for a red Notebook computer, whose battery will last 6 hours minimum. Finding answers to these sorts of questions can take a long time, requiring searches through multiple product families, documents and web sites. This is the silo problem. The PC Sales Guide/Configurator, no matter how complex your requirements, will produce a list of matching system units in about one second. Scroll down to see how that looks......
In the screen shot below, we performed that same search for a red Notebook with a Battery Life in excess of 6 hours. In less than one second, searching across multiple families, we got several hits, complete with price and supply values. There are hits among ThinkPads, IdeaPads, and Edge models......from multiple silos. In addition the Show Details function has been activated on one system , so we can read the extended description. In Needs Assist, you can open the Show Details for as many systems as you like, and compare them side by side. We only did one here, so you can see how the needs/filters appear once you make a choice..