In earlier columns, we discussed two technologies for enterprise application integration (EAI). Data content analysis is used to normalize live databases or files, to reverse engineer third-normal form data structures and database designs directly from the live data content. A second technology ­ inter- enterprise data integration ­ is based on XML and is used to expose all aspects of databases, including business rules, for enterprise application integration.

A third approach ­ called hyperrelational analysis ­ is the subject of this month's column. Hyperrelational analysis is used to analyze the implicit relationships between tables that reside in databases developed by the enterprise, as well as databases developed by enterprise resource planning (ERP) vendors such as SAP, Baan and others.

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