The questions of this FAQ are grouped by subject.
Conceptional issues comparing Data Warehousing with BeauTec Object Warehouse.
- How to interact with the user and feed back data into the source system?
- DW: By default all ETL connectors are read-only. The Data Warehouse is used for reporting purposes.
- BeauTec: Our interfaces are bi-directional by default.
- How high is the redundancy of data?
- DW: The redundancy of data is very high. It is copied into the DW and also into each Data Mart or Data Cube.
- BeauTec: No redundancy as we only create Objects pointing to external data structures.
- ETL – data is transformed during import. Where is the source model available?
- DW: The source data model is not known in the Data Warehouse. Only the ETL-Interfaces know parts of it.
- BeauTec: Our interfaces import only the external system data model. Having all data models available as object hierarchies, relationships can easily (graphically or procedurally) be built.
- What has to be done if more data from a system is required?
- DW: The ETL Interface have to be enhanced and the Data model of the DW has to be changed.
- BeauTec: We just need to add new attributes to existing objects.
- What if an external system is replaced? (E.g. the user does not want to see a difference over time.)
- DW: A new ETL has to be created and the new source data has to be transformed to result in exactly the same format as the old system.
- BeauTec: The same object in our Object Warehouse returns transparently data over time from both systems, pointing to the old and new one.
- How about availability of data on various frequencies (minute, hour, day, month, etc.), different UOMs (unit of measure), and different data types?
- DW: Normally frequencies and different UOMs are not available at request. The data has again to be copied to be available in other units. If the data type changes from one source system to the next, the Data Warehouse has to be changed.
- BeauTec: Within our Object Warehouse all conversions are instantly possible, pre-calculated or on request. Our internal data transfer serves all data-types at the same time.
- How can the relationship model be historized?
- DW: Hierarchies and relationships are static by default.
- BeauTec: We support even historized time based object hierarchies and relationships.
- How high is the effort to change the Date Warehouse model?
- DW: Whenever new request are made by the user and the DW does not already support this information, a new ETL has to be created, a new DW-structure has to be designed or an existing one has to be enhanced, new Data Marts have to be created. During the change of the DW, no user can work with it.
- BeauTec: Most of the model changes and aggregation calculations are object oriented, hierarchical and online, meaning that resulting data for the user is always (by definition) up to date. Model changes are mostly performed automatically when the source model changes.
- What if the aggregation/transformation of certain data requires information from various other systems (That even might not be available at that point in time)?
- DW: Using so-called Information Brokers, this is infeasible. A normal ETL also supports only the retrieval from one source system by default.
- BeauTec: As we do aggregation after the model structure is available as Meta data in our Object-Warehouse, all relationships to other data is available.In addition we provide std. Query features for data propagation, presentation and frequency without creating redundancy.
- How high is maintenance?
- DW: Changes have to be made, whenever a source system changes or a user requests different information.
- BeauTec: The best is to give a reference example: One of our customers has 800 employees and 2000 contractors. The Integration Platform integrates most of their data systems, including SAP, Process Historians, Lab-Systems etc. We have built on top more than 30 specific business applications that serve the overall efficiency.Their Maintenance effort is 1,5 people/year. At the same time they gather new business requirements, create functional specifications, perform testing and hand-over of new components, etc.
- Where is the Business Intelligence (Business rules) located?
- DW: All over the place. In each ETL, in the DW Data Dictionary, in the Data Staging to prepare Data Marts, etc.
- BeauTec: As all external models are known in the Object Warehouse, the only location for Business rules is the central Information Platform.
A new version of BeauTec CMDB is available since march 2011.
A new version of BeauTec Business Pilot is available since January 2011.