Inmon disputes SAP's data warehouse terminology

A leading authority on data warehousing has attacked SAP's Business Warehouse module as inadequate for the job.

Bill Inmon, touted as the "father of data warehousing" and the chief technology officer at Pine Cone software, said, "What SAP is calling a data warehouse [it's BW module] is in fact not a data warehouse.

"It does not contain normalised data, it does not contain historical data, it is not a foundation that you can use to build on for future reporting requirements," Inmon said.

He said SAP's track record with BW in the US was not a good one. "It has been very expensive and time consuming," Inmon said.

Additionally, Inmon said storing non-SAP data in the BW was "a very difficult thing to do".

"At this point in time, SAP's giving their software away [in the US]," he said. "I have no idea if they're giving it away for free here, but they tried to sell it in the States but after people bought it in they said 'the only way we're going to accept this is if you give it to us for free'."

Inmon spoke at a seminar called ERP & Data Warehousing in Sydney and Melbourne last week.

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