Saturday, November 19, 2005

What's In A Name?

People have been a bit confused by the term “cube” when it comes to a multidimensional data set. A “cube” allows you to ask questions with multiple dimensions associated with the query. It would go something like “I want to see sales and costs for Arizona, by city, by quarter, by product category, by high profit customers.” Do you notice how there are lots of “by this, by this, by that” type qualifiers? A cube implies three dimensions. There were more than three criteria when retrieving the sales information but we still call the structure a cube. Cubes are highly optimized for these types of queries. Other database structures like the ones you likely use everyday are not optimized for these types of queries. In fact cubes can hold many dimensions with detailed granularity, if that’s what’s required.

So don’t let this “Cube” term mislead you. If it does, perhaps you can think of it as a multidimensional cube or MD Cube.


Post a Comment

<< Home