April 2009

BI ThoughtLeaderTM by ParAccel

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The majority of companies have implemented their business intelligence (BI) environments according to a physically layered data warehouse architecture and based on traditional general-purpose relational databases.

Specialized analytic databases using technologies such as columnar orientation, massively parallel processing and other techniques have now emerged. Such new DBMSs now offer significantly improved performance for typical BI applications, enable previously impossible analyses and often lower cost implementation.

They also have the potential to challenge the current physically layered Data Warehouse architecture. This paper reexamines the trade-offs that have been made in the layered architecture and argues that analytical databases may enable a move to a simpler non-layered architecture with significant benefits in terms of lower costs of implementation, maintenance, and use.