August 17, 2006

Business Objects on EIM, ETL, etc.

I chatted with some Business Objects ETL/EIM (Enterprise Information Management) folks today, in a call that was a direct response to what I heard from and posted about Informatica. The core of the Business Objects story can be summarized (albeit brutally!) like this:

What I found most interesting (other than the text analytics part of their story), is their emphasis on what may be called data provenance. Compliance is making “one truth” almost as important as BI vendors have long claimed it was. But the more elaborate the data’s journey, the more chances there are it will be damaged on the way. Thus, to have perfect trust in your results, you need visibility all the way back into the source of the data.

Arguably, that’s a compromise position, between those of the relational purists on the one hand and the DBMS2 advocates on the other. Relational purists think everything has to be managed by one rigorous data model, or there’s no way proper constraints can be enforced. DBMS2 advocates say that the best you can or should hope for is loose coupling between systems with rigorously specified public interfaces. If the individual systems can’t be trusted, no scheme will give reliable results. And known inconsistencies can be fixed by something like MDM in the middle, just as it is in any other approach that doesn’t assume enterprises will have single Grand Unified central databases.

I, of course, am among the DBMS2 advocates.


One Response to “Business Objects on EIM, ETL, etc.”

  1. Text Technologies»Blog Archive » Business Objects’ perspective on text mining (and search) on August 17th, 2006 7:15 pm

    […] I had a call with Business Objects, mainly about their overall EIM/ETL product line (Enterprise Information Management, a superset of Extract/Transform/Load). But I took the opportunity to ask about their deal with Attensity. (Attensity themselves posted more about the relationship, including some detailed links, here.) It actually sounds pretty real. They also mentioned that there seem to be a bunch of startups proposing search as a substitute for data warehousing, much as FAST sometimes likes to. […]

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