Last month, I found my soapbox and climbed on up in order to dispel a myth found in a vendor-authored white paper. The myth: you can perform world class analytics without the bother of a data warehouse. From the lofty but sturdy perch on the box, I refuted two vendor-initiated misconceptions about the data warehouse. First was the contention that the warehouse is nothing more than a central copy of operational data for reporting - where, oh where is that cleansed, integrated, clearly defined, metadata-rich, subject-oriented enterprise view of data that we business intelligence (BI) practitioners know and love? Second was the claim of vastly faster delivery of analysis capabilities if you skip the time-consuming warehouse construction activities - sorry, but cleansing, integrating, defining (across business lines) and documenting data from our creaky old legacy applications takes time, and if you skip these steps, you get what you pay for: very little.
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