Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

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Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  amir2 on Thu Sep 16, 2010 11:05 am

Hi

Going through my three Kimball books, I can't find an example of taking a Bus Matrix and fleshing it out to include detailed requirements. For example, starting with a Date column is good, but whre do specify Daily, Weekly, etc? Is there a template for a fleshed out Bus Matrix e.g.

............Date
............Daily......Weekly......Quarterly......Customer
Order......X............X..............X.................X.......

What I am trying to capture is that Customer orders needs to be tracked by Day, Week and Quarter.

What is the recommended approach for capturing this information please?

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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  ngalemmo on Thu Sep 16, 2010 12:48 pm

One technique is to use a code at the intersection with a legend at the bottom of the matrix. For example, for the date dimension, instead of using 'X', use 'D', 'W', 'M' and so on. If its 'D' it implies all the ones above it (aggregates) are applicable.
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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  amir2 on Mon Sep 20, 2010 10:47 am

Thanks - that's a nice way of dealing with Dates.

Other dimension, however, are tricky as they have multiple attributes. I like the simple high level view of the Bus Matrix and I want to be able to somehow drill down into detail from the matrix itself. I haven't found a good way of doing this from Excel. Of course, there may be featuers of Excel that I am not aware of.

I would also consider open source software for capturing requirements if there are any tools out there?

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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  ngalemmo on Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:13 pm

The purpose of the matrix is to provide a very simple one page (hopefully) overview of the interconnections between the facts and dimensions. It is not the sole piece of documentation. Going into specific attributes defeats the purpose of the matrix. That is what the data dictionary is for.

If you are dealing with aggregates and have created additional dimensions to support those aggregates, you would list those aggregate dimensions in the matrix. Facts at higher levels of detail would have a 'X' in those columns, since the can support reporting at the aggregate level. However, even in these situations, having a code (rather than 'X') in the column and a legend, as you can do with dates, is sometimes all you need.

In a vary large implementation it is not unusual to have a high level matrix listing broad subject areas and key conforming dimensions along with lower level matrixes for the subject areas showing detail and aggregate dimensions.
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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  amir2 on Wed Sep 22, 2010 11:53 am

Yes, the Bus Matrix is a very nice, powerful and simple view of the problem at hand.

I am simply trying to find a tool/technique that would enable drilling down, from the Bus Matrix, into the lower level detail. As you know, each one those X's has an awful lot of detail beneath it.

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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  LAndrews on Mon Nov 08, 2010 1:03 pm


As ngalemmo mentioned, the bus matrix is really just a high level tool to identify the existence and relationships of the facts and dimensions.

I find the matrix very usefull during the high level requirements workshops, as well as during the strategic project planning/scoping phases.

When it comes to the "details", the delivery of the solution should be treated like any other software development process.

Common artifacts include : Logical Data Models, Physical Data Models, Data Conversion, development tasks (ETL, Cube, Report etc) ... as well as testing plans, project plans, communication strategies, training plans etc.


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Re: Fleshing out the Bus Matrix

Post  hang on Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:56 pm

Excel might be a very effective design tool to achieve what you are trying to do as you may turn X's into hyper text pointing to corresponding worksheet.

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