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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Required reading for any DW professional !
Dimensional modelling is the key to designing conformed dimension data warehouses.
This authoritative book covers dimensional modelling in great depth, but at the same time is very accessible. You will want it by your side to reference its examples of how to cope with various scenarios.
ps The companion volume, the DW Life Cycle Toolkit by Kimball & Ross, covers...
Published on 24 July 2003 by Mike Casey

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars It's OK
Dislikes: Long book, can't it get to the point a lot quicker? Maybe it can if it tried. Examples are boaring. Not enough exercises.

Likes: Comprehensive coverage.
Published 16 months ago by Libs


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Required reading for any DW professional !, 24 July 2003
Dimensional modelling is the key to designing conformed dimension data warehouses.
This authoritative book covers dimensional modelling in great depth, but at the same time is very accessible. You will want it by your side to reference its examples of how to cope with various scenarios.
ps The companion volume, the DW Life Cycle Toolkit by Kimball & Ross, covers higher level aspects of data warehousing, and is just as good.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on Data Warehousing. Full Stop., 4 Sep 2008
By 
John Ryan (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
I bought the First Edition of this book over ten years ago, and it helped demystify some of my preconceptions about Data Warehousing. I since buillt upon my experience, along with several highly successful, highly performant warehouse solutions in the Telecoms, Public Services and Banking industries.

In summary - this book works.

One of it's greatest strengths is that it is readable, and easily understood - despite the Initially unusual design techniques. Anyone with database design experience should have no problem following the concepts.

After an initial chapter on the "basics dimensional design" it then explores the subject chapter by chapter using "case studies". You're bound to find one industry you're familiar with, the subjects include Retail Sales, Inventory, Order Processing, HR and Financial Services.

Each case study, explores the fundamentals in further detail, and introduces an additional concept for which a solution is provided.

It's far from a "cook-book" approach, but both myself and colleagues (I've kept in touch with two other people who swear by Ralph Kimball and the toolkit), have relied upon it for solutions through the years.

Take for example, the problem of modling a complex hierarchy of business units which can (in theory) have any number of levels, but users want to analyse data for "Ultimate Parent Companies" or for all the subsidiaries of a given company. Ralph has a solution.

In summary, if you're working in the Business Intelligence industry, as a designer, architect or even an intested project manager - you should understand Dimensional Design techniques, and this is the book the explain them.

Ironically, an alternative book The Data Warehouse ETL Toolkit: Practical Techniques for Extracting, Cleaning, Conforming, and Delivering Data, is suitable if either you're an ETL developer or simply want a good overview of the techniques. Also co-authored by Ralph Kimball, it provides a succinct overview of Dimensional Design along with a description of the thorny issue of ETL.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kimball is the standard book to own on this subject, 27 Dec 2003
By A Customer
Excellent ground up introduction to dimensional modelling. If you think you need this book, then this is most certainly the book to get you started and take you well into the subject.
Ralph Kimball wrote the first edition of this book. This edition has been updated by another author and includes (for example sections on finance, health and education).
Will not disappoint. We used this book as a management communication vehicle (we gave them copies and that saved a LOT of repeated and dumb questions). Minor issue, - not enough mauve in the book.
Recommended if you want to get into marts, warehouses and a series of career opportunities. I also recommend the series (they look very similar to this cover).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kimball Wizard, 25 July 2010
By 
Andy Hogg (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Before you read this book, read the confusingly similarly titled "The Data Warehouse Lifecycle Toolkit". Then marvel at one man's obsession for writing so many different books with near identical titles and cover illustrations.

However what Kimball lacks in imagination for his dust-jackets, he makes up for with his unparalleled knowledge of dimensional modelling.

Every chapter in this book illustrates the practical application of the principles of dimensional modelling to a different business process or industry - getting more and more complex the further in you read.

If you are going to be responsible for solving the problems of dimensionally modelling a business, then this book is going to save you months of scratching your head and wondering "How am I going to....."

This book has so much important information in it that I read it not once but twice whilst I was laying by a pool on holiday in Spain. Other people were reading things like Andy McNab and John Grisham.

There isn't too much in the way of covert military operations, international espionage, or court room dramas in this book - perhaps Dr Kimball could look into that when he writes his next book. Perhaps additionally when he writes his next book, his publisher could tell him that there is no law which says that books have to have the words "Data Warehouse" or "Toolkit" in them.

Look at Andy McNab. "Bravo Two-Zero". Not "The Bravo Two-Zero Data Warehouse Toolkit".
Look at John Grisham. "The Firm". Not "The Data Warehouse Firm Toolkit".

That aside this book is absolutely excellent and Dr Kimball is such a huge intellect that I'd definitely like to invite him to a dinner party (along with Kim il Jong, Woody Allen, Keith Moon and Beaker from The Muppet Show).

I wonder what Kim il Jong's views are on Data Marts and whether they should be aligned to business processes or business departments.

Perhaps Keith Moon would take umbrage with Dr Kimball's hard line against the snowflake schema - and then proceed to wreck the place.

It would certainly be an interesting dinner party and I feel that we would all learn a lot about dimensional modelling during the course of the evening. In the meantime, for those of you who aren't planning on inviting Dr Kimball to dinner, you could do a lot worse than to read this book instead.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have, 4 Dec 2006
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I picked this up about 18 months ago as a primer, and it's still helping me today as I continue to develop new datawarehouse designs. Each time I have to do something for the first time, there's usually a chapter in the book for it. I feel a lot more comfortable having it on my desk!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bible for starting a Data Warehouse project, 22 Sep 2007
By 
Barry Ryan (Dublin,Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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Our organisation was establishing a BI competence centre. This book along with the others in the series offered all the guidance needed to make sense of the terminology - and more importantly gave real-life worked examples rather than just theory. We bought it for everyone on the team.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, 6 Mar 2006
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I found this book extrememly useful. I do not come from a database background, I'm more of an analyst but the concepts were well explained and it all made sense.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Buy, 3 April 2013
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Fantastic down to earth explanations with real business situations.
Worth buying if you are a starter in the DW technology.
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3.0 out of 5 stars It's OK, 13 Dec 2012
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Dislikes: Long book, can't it get to the point a lot quicker? Maybe it can if it tried. Examples are boaring. Not enough exercises.

Likes: Comprehensive coverage.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Kimball is the definitive source for DW/BI, 18 July 2010
By 
S. Dietz (Wicklow, Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
If you are looking for clarity as to how to approach particular dimensional data models for specific usage, this book has plenty of examples and discussion. It will prove an important resource as you architect your Data Warehouse.
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