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It may not have the buzzword sex appeal of e-commerce, online marketplaces, or customer relationship management, but data warehousing is integral to all of these new economy technologies. As the repository of business information and the source of the multidimensional views of the data that users need for sophisticated analyses, a data warehouse is a critical analytic tool for business decision makers.
According to AMR Research, vendors are shaking up the data warehousing space with new, more efficient ways of building and managing warehouses. In traditional data warehouses, data is manually moved from source systems and dumped into a centralized data warehouse. The data must then be converted from multiple, heterogeneous sources to a single format in the data warehouse. But Shell Services is bucking tradition with its Kalido product, which reconciles data differences, such as account structures and reporting periods through an intuitive, graphical interface. As a result, business analysts can determine how to combine heterogeneous data. MetaMatrix takes a different approach to the same problem with its Global Data Dictionary. Instead of having to learn how to access data from multiple data stores, developers only have to know how to access one data source.