Well, it has been almost 2 months since IBM announced the in full sphere warehouse for System z.
The announcement is particularly well-suited to customers who understand and appreciate the qualities of the System z platform. (see a 2006r Willie Favero post on why warehouse and z make sense together : here)
The offering enables operational and warehouse data to be on the same platform (think co-location), facilitates the possibility of near real-time analytics linked to key applications (think in-line), and delivers multidimensional, no- copy OLAP capabilities!
To build the solution, you take your existing DB2 on z/ OS, and on Linux for z you add both the new InfoSphere Warehouse, and then for presentation, add Cognos BI. (Note that for the presentation layer, the solution is designed to easily go to DataQuant or Excel as well.)
There are built-in tools for physical modeling via Design Studio, data movement and transformations via the SQL warehousing tool, and ‘no-copy’ OLAP analytics via built in Cubing Services modeling and a ROLAP engine to build those Materialized Query Tables we need to build those fast reports about sales of products by line, region, well….you know the drill.
Now, it is true that this is aimed at getting a good start on warehousing, and you can still augment and connect to other related parts of the information management portfolio related to pulling together your information for business intelligence.
Good examples of this include the already mentioned Cognos 8 BI, and InfoSphere Data Architect for complete logical and physical modeling, the Industry Data Models we have been working on for a few decades now, the Information Server for federating panoply of data sources, and even Master Data Management connections via the MDM Server.
You know..... all those tools to ensure your data is clean, accurate, and trustworthy –well, you get the idea. (I won’t say kind, courteous, cheerful and so on like the Boy Scout oath!!)
So, take another look at the volume, kinds, and speed of data your enterprise needs. Ask yourself what your perception of the risk and cost of setting up warehouses is before this announcement. Consider the current Gartner ratings of our BI portfolio, the value of system Z, and start to think about what you could if you put the whole thing on the platform you already put your key business applications on.
See if you can be more cheerful about getting information out of your enterprise data!