February 2008 Entries

Launchy - My Productivity is Through the Roof!

Launchy is the best application launcher/productivity program I have ever used. Basically when I want to open something, I no longer open the start menu. I hit {Ctrl}+{Space} and a little window pops up. I start typing and Launchy starts matching to items in my start menu, my quick launch, my Internet favorites/bookmarks, and a special folder where I store Launchy specific commands and shortcuts. Above is a screenshot of the index that I point Launchy to. These are places I normally tuck away programs ......

Data Warehouses Should Be Granularity Agnostic

When you are designing a data warehouse solution that publishes out data marts, always be sure that your warehouse is granularity agnostic. Granularity means the level of detail you track (defined more in depth below). Being agnostic means that you don't care about or have knowledge of something. To be "granularity agnostic" means that your warehouse doesn't care or have knowledge of how granular your data is. In essence, you design it up front so that it can get as much or as little detail as possible. ......

ALT.NET Conference Seattle Filling Up Fast

81 spots have been filled since 4PM CST when registration opened (about 3:30 hours ago). There is still time if you want a spot! Hurry though, at this rate registration will close off soon. There are only 150 spots total. http://altdotnet.org/events... ......

ALT.NET Conference: Take 2 - Seattle

Registration looks like it just opened up! See you there if you get a seat! This event is April 18-20 at Digipen in Seattle, WA. As with the first conference, ALT.NET is free, but only accepts the first 150 people to sign up ......

Firefox Tip: Open A Closed Tab

I bet you didn't know that you can reopen a Firefox tab you have closed. Let's say for instance you closed a Firefox tab, but remembered you needed information from it immediately after closing it, or possibly you closed it by accident. 1. Click the Red "X" or type Ctrl+W to close this tab. 2. Right click on one of the other tabs and select [Undo Close Tab]. 3. And Yes! It's back ......

Data Marts Slowly Changing Dimensions

In my last post, I put in the diagram a Type 1 and a Type 2 insert. I think I need to elaborate on that just a bit. Type 1 updates don't have any concept of history. Type 2 updates are what I use to encapsulate all history types (Type 2, Type 3, Type 4, and Type 6). These dimensions are where Ralph Kimball's dimensional modeling come in. So before anyone points out that I didn't talk about the other types in my diagram, Type 2 updates for me is synonymous with all history in a data mart ......

Data Warehousing, Data Mart Dimensions and Fact Table Growth

NOTE: This is up for discussion. I am not an expert in Data Warehousing (yet). I hear from my Data Modeler that we are mostly Kimball in our approach, but I think that only applies to the Data Marts. When I think of a Data Warehouse, I am thinking of a central place to store historical information. Then we have a concept of Data Marts, which are separate databases of information in a slightly denormalized fashion (this is where you hear about Facts, Dimensions, and Aggregates). For Data Warehousing ......