Saturday, February 28, 2009

Another BI workshop

This is the first workshop organized by IronOne Technologies. It was started on last Thursday and will continue till this Tuesday. I feel bit tired because it is very difficult to keep on talking :), without a partner. Almost all workshops that were organized before, were done by Gogula and me, hence work was shared, doing it alone is a very difficult task. Audience of the workshop is really good, some have work on BI related projects too. Everybody exposes an average knowledge, hence it is not so difficult to run the workshop.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

How to distinguish between measures and KPIs…

As you all know, measures are identified at the analysis stage of Data Warehouse/BI project. Are all identified measures KPIs? This question came up, while we were having a discussion on one of our new projects. It was an interesting question, thought to make a post on it, showing what I think, what I have read… In a way, yes, we can consider all measures as KPIs. But they become proper KPIs when it shows the quality of the value, health of the value. This requires another attribute to be attached: Let’s take an example, Sales Amount, obviously it is a measure. It shows the sales amount for some dimensions (for current year, for a product). Does it show the health of that value, whether it is good or bad? No, it is just a value. Important thing to remember is, KPI is not just a value, it indicates the health of the value too. So, if we need to make Sales Amount as a KPI, we need to use another attribute such as Target. Target value allows to judge the Sales Amount whether it is healthier or not, hence Sales Amount becomes a KPI. That’s how I see the difference between a measure and a KPI? Am I right? Any thoughts on this?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Is your architecture leading to Stovepipe data mart?

Question arose while we were discussing BI. I asked myself, whats the hell is "Stovepipe" data mart, I was aware of the word but picture behind it, did not come to my mind immediately. So, brushed up.... Stovepipe data marts are nothing but data marts that prevent integration of themselves for making a data warehouse because of the unavailability of conformed dimensions. In most cases, data marts (dimensions in data marts) are designed with their own rules, policies and mainly own structures. This results incompatible dimensions in different data marts though they represent same entity. It will be a mess, will be awkward situation when it comes for making a data warehouse, combining all data marts. Though data marts have many advantages, cost-wise, time-wise, etc.. this is the major disadvantage of them. Are you leading to a Stovepipe data mart?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

SSRS 2008 Video: Formatting text blocks individually in a single textbox

This is my first video, had been planning for months, and somehow was able to do one. I do not know whether the quality of this lesson is okay, because I made many mistakes while recording, this is my 8th or 9th recording :). This shows one of the newest features of Reporting Services 2008. Reporting Services 2005 did not allow us to format text blocks in a textbox with different styles. Now it is possible. Watch the video and see whether it is useful. Appreciate your comments on this.