In This Issue...

May 2013


In this issue we present some of our favorite In the News topics and direct you to some great articles and presentations that have been recently published by our team.


Every issue we will highlight some subject matter expertise we've contributed to the community in Ask the Expert. In addition, we will share some things we have learned in recent meetngs or projects in a section entitled Heard Around the Water Cooler.


We welcome your feedback for future issues.


The Management Team

StatSlice Systems

Who We Are and What We Can Do for You

As a full-service data services consulting firm headquartered in Dallas, TX, we partner with our clients to deliver business intelligence and business analytics solutions that help solve their most complex needs.


With decades of industry experience and functional expertise, our consulting teams go beyond the norm to develop new insights, drive results, and help grow your business.


Let us give you a hand. Email us today at [email protected].


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In the News

The Top 10 Trends in Analytics.  Tim Elliot is a favorite blogger on Business Intelligence and Analytics.  Click here to read a great article from him.


We always like to read Wayne Eckerson's blog.  He recently posted this interesting perspective: Historical BI Cycles: From Reporting to Analysis and the Future.  Click here to read his musings.


Philip Russom, a research analyst at The Data Warehousing Institute, wrote an interesting blog where he summarized the results of an informal Twitter survey on Hadoop.  It's titled: Integrating Hadoop into Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing: An Overview in 27 Tweets.  Click here to read the full article from Philip.


Recent Presentations and Articles from Our Team
Bernard Wehbe, Managing Partner

Overlooked Principles that Can Make You a Rock Star in Your Organization.  On April 30, Bernard presented this paper to a large audience at Dataversity's Enterprise Data World conference in San Diego.  A complete white paper will soon be available.  SearchDataAnalytics published an article on Bernard's presentation. Click here to read their analysis.


Bernard Wehbe, one of the co-founders of StatSlice, has over twelve years of consulting experience focused on data warehousing and business intelligence.  His experience include data warehousing architecture, OLAP, data modeling, ETL, reporting, business analysis, team leadership, and project management.


Fred Zimmerman, StatSlice Data Architect

Hadoop Business Case: A Cost Effective Queryable Data Archive/Storage Platform.  Click here to read the full article.


Fred Zimmerman, a StatSlice Data Architect, is a veteran of data warehouse, business intelligence and database solutions with over 17 years of experience at Fortune 500 companies. Fred has proven experience integrating innovative ideas with industry best practices with the end result being streamlined, scalable and versatile data solutions.

Ask the Experts
From a Tableau Software LinkedIn Group:  How to host and serve packaged workbooks (twbx) from a webpage?  We are in the healthcare industry and are subject to HIPAA. Oftentimes, our reports have protected health information that identifies patients. It's the "lose control" part we are not complacent about. That's why we prefer online viewing over download approach.

Jim VogelResponse: Jim Vogel, Senior Consultant, StatSlice Systems


One of my clients is also in the healthcare industry and we use Tableau Server to control what their clients can see/download. Tableau server lets you turn off features like view underlying data and export/save workbook so you never "lose control."  We even integrate the dashboard into their own web app and the dashboard just becomes another piece of their portal.

Depending on the HIPAA requirements you probably don't want them downloading the entire workbook anyway. You "lose control" the minute someone downloads the workbook. It is pretty easy to export the packaged data into something else. Our solution was to embed the dashboards/worksheets into a web page just like you see from Tableau Public, which is embedded all over the place. This way my client keeps sensitive data internal, but still gives their clients access to the data in aggregated/anonymized form.

In summation, use Tableau server and be strict on what accounts can do anything more than filter/view the dashboards.

Heard Around the Water Cooler

The Enterprise Data Warehouse: Dead or Alive?

The drums are beating, proclaiming that the death of data warehousing is just around the corner. In Gartner's 2013 tech trends press release they wrote that Big Data was "leading organizations to abandon the concept of a single enterprise data warehouse containing all information needed for decisions."


So what is Big Data from a high level? Big Data is data that's too large, too dispersed, and too unstructured to be managed using conventional information storage systems. It is fueled by the enormous amounts of information generated by the Internet-and tends to be more real-time in nature. The potential intelligence that can be gathered from these new sources, especially for certain types of companies, is very enticing. However, the vast majority of traditional data being organized for business intelligence and analytics is still coming from traditional data warehousing. The data warehouse is not dead, it's now just another legacy system.  


Most of the "data warehouse is irrelevant" noise is coming from Big Data vendors and marketers. Big Data, or any data for that matter, should be extracted and visualized from all correct sources, including data warehouses, data marts, or any other corporate data silos, including external data sources. Some of today's analytical tools and visualization products are reducing the warehouse's role as the overall data repository. That's not a problem unless you let it become a problem. Companies need to gather and analyze all the information sources that are relevant, regardless of where or how they are stored. Big Data is different than data stored in the traditional data warehouse. That does not mean that they are not complementary.


Over the years the subject of whether a single corporate data warehouse for the enterprise was a sound strategy or not has been soundly debated. The reality is that no matter how centralized you wanted things to be, data stores popped up everywhere. Today's desktop and mobile visualization tools make the desire for data access even stronger and the ability to keep things centralized nearly impossible. Big Data just adds to the complexity (and excitement) of this new world of data for everyone and on all platforms.


The bottom line. Instead of declaring the enterprise data warehouse dead because of Big Data, we should view it as a tremendous opportunity for improved intelligence value as the result of multiple platforms complementing-not competing-with each other. These two platforms are very different in terms of vendor technologies, data types, business drivers, system architectures, operational procedures, and skills required. But as a good friend of mine says to me a lot, "it's all good." And it will keep a lot of people employed for a long time.


Steven Crofts, Director of Marketing at StatSlice Systems

Upcoming Events
  StatSlice Partners and Consultants will be participating in these upcoming events.
May 21, 11:00 am CDT, a StatSlice Business Data Toolkit WebinarSimple Analysis Using Tableau 8's New Connector for Google Analytics.  Click here to register.
Friday, June 14, 9:00 am CDT, Bernard Wehbe, StatSlice co-founder and Managing Partner will be presenting at the TDWI Dallas Chapter.  The topic will be Get Real with Analytics: Overlooked Principles that Can Make You a Rock Star in your Organization. The meeting will be held at Bravo Technical Resources, 4835 LBJ Freeway, Suite 1000, Dallas, TX 75244.

June 25, 11:00 am CDT, a StatSlice Business Data Toolkit Webinar:  Microsoft's New GeoFlow for Excel.  Click here to register.

Steven CroftsSteven Crofts, Editor
StatSlice Systems
6060 North Central Expressway
Suite 500
Dallas, TX 75206
(214) 206-9290 x 110

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