Simba is in the business of helping people write custom ODBC drivers. If you work for a company that builds a new data engine, one of your biggest challenges will be to build a standard interface such that reporting tools like Excel, QlikView, and Tableau can connect to the data stored in your data engine. Within your organization, you and your team will focus on the “secret sauce” of your data engine and you will feel that because what you have is so unique, companies like Microsoft and Tableau will be very keen on connecting to your data engine and leveraging what you have built. However, the challenge today is that there are literally hundreds of new data engines being built that a company like Tableau or Microsoft just does not have the bandwidth to build separate connectors for all of these data sources.
So, how do you ensure that your customers are able to connect from Excel, QlikView, Tableau, etc to your very special data engine? You write a custom ODBC driver. For example, when you look at pretty much every data source that Tableau connects to, you will find that almost all of them have an ODBC driver that Tableau calls into rather than any native API. In fact, if you look at all of the major NoSQL and Big Data sources, they have all had to write their own ODBC drivers before Tableau would consider making them “named” data sources – this list includes Hadoop Hive, Cloudera Impala, DataStax Cassandra, SparkSQL, Google BigQuery, Drill, and Couchbase. Now let me tell you a secret – all of the data sources I just listed all realized that writing their own custom ODBC drivers would take away their resources and talent from working on the core of their products. They all searched for how they could easily write their own custom ODBC driver and they all found the SimbaEngine SDK.
The SimbaEngine SDK was built by Simba specifically to make writing an ODBC driver as easy as possible:
1. used by hundreds of software companies to write their own custom ODBC drivers
2. used by Simba to build every one of our own ODBC drivers for popular data sources
3. tested and certified to connect with all major BI and ETL tools
4. allows you to write a basic read-only ODBC driver in as little as 5 days
5. fully ODBC 3.8 compliant
6. available on all major operating platforms including Windows, Linux, and Mac
ODBC is a technology that has been around since the early 1990s – in fact, Simba co-authored the ODBC specification with Microsoft in 1992. ODBC is the standard API for database connectivity. The flexibility of ODBC and the fact that it gained very wide adoption early on has made ODBC the de facto data connectivity standard for over 2 decades. If you write a custom ODBC driver for your special data engine, I can guarantee you that all of the major BI tools will just work with your data engine and you will provide your customers will plenty of choice on reporting, analytics, and visualization tools.