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Dan Linstedt

Bill Inmon has given me this wonderful opportunity to blog on his behalf. I like to cover everything from DW2.0 to integration to data modeling, including ETL/ELT, SOA, Master Data Management, Unstructured Data, DW and BI. Currently I am working on ways to create dynamic data warehouses, push-button architectures, and automated generation of common data models. You can find me at Denver University where I participate on an academic advisory board for Masters Students in I.T. I can't wait to hear from you in the comments of my blog entries. Thank-you, and all the best; Dan Linstedt http://www.COBICC.com, danL@danLinstedt.com

About the author >

Cofounder of Genesee Academy, RapidACE, and BetterDataModel.com, Daniel Linstedt is an internationally known expert in data warehousing, business intelligence, analytics, very large data warehousing (VLDW), OLTP and performance and tuning. He has been the lead technical architect on enterprise-wide data warehouse projects and refinements for many Fortune 500 companies. Linstedt is an instructor of The Data Warehousing Institute and a featured speaker at industry events. He is a Certified DW2.0 Architect. He has worked with companies including: IBM, Informatica, Ipedo, X-Aware, Netezza, Microsoft, Oracle, Silver Creek Systems, and Teradata.  He is trained in SEI / CMMi Level 5, and is the inventor of The Matrix Methodology, and the Data Vault Data modeling architecture. He has built expert training courses, and trained hundreds of industry professionals, and is the voice of Bill Inmons' Blog on http://www.b-eye-network.com/blogs/linstedt/.

The availability of real-time access to live business data β€” business visibility, as Cisco likes to call it β€” will draw a line under enterprise investment in data warehouse products, says Michael Carter, co-founder and chief marketing officer of CXO Systems: "The data warehouse is going the way of the mainframe." This from an article at Looseley Coupled.

Seriously folks! I'm not kidding.. Is the Data Warehouse really going the way of the mainframe because of EII?

http://www.businessintelligence.com/ex/asp/code.115/xe/article.htmI do not agree with this statement at all. In fact, if we look at EII and it's value to the industry (which it has quite a bit of), EII is fitting in nicely as another mechanism to backend reporting - allowing the EDW to remain in a strategic nature, while handling the tactical and operational data ON TOP of the EDW. If we dig deeper, and examine the larger picture of SOA we find that a strategic EDW becomes CRITICAL to the mix of back-end components required to expedite the creation of an enterprise SOA system - hardly legacy technology.

Just because EII is becoming critical in the component stack doesn't mean the amassed data sets are old, brittle, and non-conformant to business. In fact it’s just the opposite. Successful data warehouses play a huge role in the strategic success of understanding the business and feeding vendors, supply chains, external customers, internal customers as much data as they can handle. Without a consolidated and quality controlled data warehouse, the SOA is just another EAI system with exposure to the outside world.

Ok - I'm upset, but shouldn't it be that way? I don't mind the change to EII, nor the need for EII to be involved in SOA initiatives - but don't tell me the Data Warehouse is going the way of the mainframe, and then not back it up with quantitative facts. A more accurate statement would be that the EDW is changing into a more dynamic and integral part of the overall enterprise architecture.

Here's another article: "The Data Warehouse Is Dead", written in 2004 after the fall of ENRON. The Data Warehouse is NOT dead, they are alive and kicking - in fact, most are expanding. Michael Carter, again.

I agree there is value in distributed intelligence, don't get me wrong. I also agree there is lots of value in up-to-date information. However, I feel he is tremendously discounting the nature of quality efforts, the ROI that companies have seen, the first-look at an integrated or patterned history of customer activity, the data mining results netting corporations millions of dollars and so on. As with ANY project GOALS and OBJETIVES must be set, RISKS must be mitigated, and REQUIREMENTS must be written.

It's a shame for the EII industry that this gentleman feels the need to discount one of his major sources of quality data for enterprise views. Where do his reports and services GET their (historical) information from if an enterprise integrated view is NOT available? Can auditors answer the questions of what happened on Day X if it's not stored in a data warehouse somewhere? I'm not so sure.

In another post, Andy Haylor (Kalido) says: EII requires provisions to access the data, as does the Service Oriented Architecture that will feed the enterprise needs. He goes on to state several major issues that EII as an industry has yet to overcome (IF it wants to replace the data warehouse entirely rather than feed from it): The nature of gathering and integrating history (consistently), producing snapshots of data AS OF a particular point in time especially when the source systems have "dumped" the data beacuse they are operational, managing and controlling query access speed and timing against operational systems, trending analysis and so on.

What I would say is EII has value, it also has it's place - not to mention it's a technology built to solve specific business problems. EII as an industry needs to mature, by mature I mean - build standards, define methodologies for implementation, provide best practices, tricks and tips to implementation, develop case studies how they solve specific business problems and what the ROI on those problems are, and begin defining risk mitigation for projects and implementations across the board.

Again, EII isn't the issue here - EII is an additive component that brings value to the table for existing data warehouses, and increases the need for corporations (those that don't have one) to build EDW's, particularly Active Data Warehouses with Right-time data delivery to the SOA through utilizing BI and EII together.

Thoughts?


Posted September 14, 2005 6:19 AM
Permalink | 2 Comments |

2 Comments

Thanks for keeping the spotlight on EII. There is still quite a bit of confusion out there that needs to be cleared up, it seems.

I think it's unfortunate that there is still a vendor or two out there making these kind of incendiary (and misinformed) statements about EII vs. the EDW. As I wrote a few months ago in "An EII/ETL Detente: Can't We All Just Get Along?" http://blogs.ipedo.com/integration_insider/2005/07/an_eiietl_dtent.html people need to stop wasting time on these misguided attacks and focus on what's really important: how EII can save time and money.

At least the articles you cited appear to be on the wane, and you don't typically see them from serious EII vendors. At Ipedo, we are happy to be partners with Teradata http://www.ipedo.com/html/news_releases/news_release_062405.html the leading EDW vendor. We are also on the verge of publishing our new ROI guide for EII, where we show real potential for savings in the areas of increased flexibility, better analyst utilization, increased developer productivity, data consolidation, and application maintenance. Keep an eye out for it.

I'm surprised to see these types of articles and comments still cropping up. When I talk about EII I usually refer to vendors who push EII as a DW replacement as the foil hat crowd. I'd like to see how Michael Carter manages to report this year to last year monthly trends across two live production systems, or what he does when a user unleashes a query on his order entry system at peak load.


I think companies like Ipedo and Composite are a lot better at showing how EII fits into a BI or DI invironment. I'd lumo Mr. Carter and CXO Systems in with the foil hat crowd.

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