Last week, two of my Simba colleagues and I had the opportunity to attend an Oracle OLAP workshop for Oracle partners. This workshop was very similar to the OLAP Essentials course offered by Oracle University.   Each of the three of us had a different background, so we all got something different out of the workshop.   

As a Product Manager, I am a geek at heart, and it’s always fun to roll up the sleeves and play with technology.  At Simba, we are MDX query language experts, yet it was still good for me to review and learn about creating OLAP data models, the various views available and their uses, cube security, cube performance and scalability.   Especially useful were the various ways to extract data from an OLAP cube, including DML, SQL, and of course, MDX, as well as the ways where they can be used together.     It is especially powerful to use Oracle DML to assist an MDX calculated measure, to do time based security, and other neat tricks.

During one part of the workshop, various front end clients were demonstrated querying the Oracle OLAP cube.  After the OBIEE demonstration, the class was shown how the Simba MDX Provider for Oracle OLAP enables native Excel PivotTables to connect to the cube and create quick ad hoc reports.  The next demonstration caught me by surprise, however, since I had only heard about it but never seen it live:  we were shown yet another BI analysis tool using the Simba MDX Provider to connecting to the cube.    I can’t name names just yet, but do stay tuned in the near future for an announcement.

I also really enjoyed meeting other Oracle partners and customers.   Many of them were already familiar with our Simba MDX Provider for Oracle OLAP, and several of them had feedback for me, mostly requesting various new features.  We definitely have a full roadmap ahead of us, and we are continuing to add the features that our customers would find add the most value. 

 How about you?  What features would add value for you?  Perhaps you are used to an Excel plugin or extension, and maybe it is no longer up to date or perhaps you would like the functionality to be native rather than through a series of new menus.  Let me know!