Inmon v/s Kimball
It is a well-known fact among BI professionals that Inmon and Kimball are pioneers in the fields of Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence. Bill Inmon is considered to be the “Father of Data Warehousing” as he defined this term data warehouse and Ralph Kimball is termed as the “Father of Business Intelligence” since he defined the concept of Data Marts. Inmon and Kimball have created a huge debate in the IT world for more than a decade. These two have ferociously strived to conceptualize information management by defining different methodologies. This essay aims to compare and contrast these two methodologies.
Bill Inmon defines the data warehouse as “Subject oriented, integrated, time variant and non-volatile collection of data in support of management’s decisions” (Inmon, 2002).He follows the top down approach to build a data warehouse. In the top down approach data is first extracted from the transactional systems present in the enterprise. This data is then loaded into the staging area where it is cleansed. This data is then transformed, integrated, consolidated and then fed into the enterprise data warehouse. The next step is to create data marts which receive data from the enterprise data warehouse. These data marts are created as per the information requirements of departments in the organization. The data warehouse in Inmon’s approach is relationally designed using traditional modelling methods like the Enterprise Relationship Diagram (ERD) and has to be normalized. Since the data warehouse is relational in nature it can robustly support different types of OLTP databases. The main goal of Inmon’s approach is to create a centralised data repository which stores the “single version of the truth”. Bill Inmon calls this entire setup as the Corporate Information Factory (CIF). (Inmon, 2002).
In 2007 Bill Inmon in his book “DW 2.0 the Architecture for next generation of data warehousing” modified his CIF architecture to incorporate the...