Chuck Kelley's Answer:In my opinion, the ODS is yet another operational system. So I have less of a problem with doing this than maybe others will. I have done this at a few sites. All the POS (cash registers, reservation systems, etc.) send a feed into the ODS and then there is some "integrating" of the data. This data is used for operational reporting. Then the data is used to feed our data warehouse; and the data warehouse feeds the data marts. The big concern I would have is if they want to write back into the ODS and payments are received. This would be a big no-no because the ODS holds transient data.Les Barbusinski's Answer: A billing application is transactional nature, and its database needs to be optimized for insert/update activity (batch and on-line). This usually means logging is turned "on" and log sizes are kept small, tables are highly de-normalized and designed around a set of small, well-defined processes, joins are infrequent, units-of-work are small, referential integrity is enforced via constraints, indexes are scarce, and so on.

By contrast, a data warehouse is retrieval-based in nature, and its database needs to be optimized for complex queries with large result sets. This usually means logging is turned "off," tables are organized in either normalized or dimensional structures to facilitate ad hoc queries and analytical computations, joins are frequently used, units-of-work are large, referential integrity is enforced via ETL scripts, there are numerous indexes to facilitate data retrieval, and so on.

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