Google has announced an experimental cloud-based data management system called Fusion Tables. A press article and Slashdot thread ensued, based on some bizarre-sounding analyst quotes that I will not attempt to parse.
What Fusion Tables really seems to be is a spreadsheet without the formulae. That is, it’s a place to dump data in a grid of cells, comment on it, version it, and do elementary data manipulation. This could, I guess, be useful as an alternative to traditional RDBMS — assuming, of course, that you want to have a row-by-row debate about 100 megs of data.
Seriously, while Google Fusion Tables bears some vague resemblance to what I’m thinking about for the future of both business intelligence and data marts, it sounds as if it has a long way to go before it’s something most enterprises should spend time looking at.