Sunday, December 2, 2007

What is RICEFs in BI world?

From SAP ECC (former R/3) perspective we clearly recognize RICEF objects. Tuncay Karaca wrote very nice definition of RICEFs. Sometimes SAP people say RICEFW where W means Workflow which covers objects developed within SAP Workflow programming. Now let’s move to SAP BI world and try to identify development objects in BI area:

QR - Query (report, web template, web items, query variables, user exit)

IO – InfoObject (characteristics, key figure)

MP – MultiProvider

VP – VirtualProviders

IP – InfoProvider (InfoCubes, DSO/ODS)

ISet - InfoSet

IA – InfoArea

ISP - InfoSpoke

TR – Transformation

RT – Rule/Routine (Start/End/Expert/Update/Transfer routine/rule)

DTP - Data Transfer Process

AG - Aggregate

IS – InfoSource (in BW 3.x)

IP - InfoPackage

DS – DataSource (Extract/Transfer/Communication structure)

EX - Extractor (Function Module, report, table view, BAPI, user exit, ...)

APD - Analysis Process Designer

PC - Process Chain

Since this is a quite mix of different objects; try to sort them according the sub area of BW where they logically belong:

1. Reporting layer

QR – Query:

Report - Collection of a selection of characteristics and key figures (InfoObjects) for the analysis of the data of an InfoProvider. A query always refers exactly to one InfoProvider, whereas you can define as many queries as you like for each InfoProvider.

You define a query in the BEx Query Designer, in which you select InfoObjects or reusable structures for an InfoProvider and specify the view of the data (query view) by distributing them to filters, rows, columns, and free characteristics. You used this saved query view as a basis for data analysis and reporting in the BEx Analyzer, in BEx Web applications, in BEx Mobile Intelligence, or in formatted reporting.

Web template- HTML document that determines the structure of a Web application. It contains placeholders for Web items, data providers, and BW URLs.

Web items - An object that retrieves data from a data provider and presents it as HTML in a Web application. E.g. Analysis, report, filter pane, navigation pane, map, chart, etc.

Query variables - parameters of a query; defined in the Query Designer and that are filled with values when you execute the query or Web application. They serve as place holders for characteristic values, hierarchies, hierarchy nodes, texts and formula elements, and can be processed in different ways.

User exit – query variable can be pre-filled by user exit (report ZXRSRU01).

2. Data Warehousing layer

IO – InfoObject - Business evaluation objects (for example, customers or sales) are called InfoObjects in BI. InfoObjects are subdivided into characteristics, key figures, units, time characteristics, and technical characteristics (such as request numbers).

Characteristics - Type of InfoObject. An evaluation group such as company code, product, customer group, fiscal year, period, or region. Characteristics provide classification possibilities for the dataset. An InfoCube generally contains only a partial quantity of the characteristic values from the master data table at a time. The master data includes the permitted values for a characteristic, also called characteristic values. Characteristic values are discrete names.

Key figure - represents values or quantities. In addition to the key figures saved on the database, you have the option of defining derived (calculated) key figures in the query definition in the Business Explorer. Such key figures are calculated using a formula from the key figures of the InfoCube.

IP – InfoProvider - Objects for which the queries in SAP BW can be created or executed. There are two types of InfoProviders. One type includes objects that contain physical data. These are known as data targets, such as InfoCubes, ODS objects, and InfoObjects (characteristics with attributes, texts, or hierarchies). The other type includes objects thatdisplay no physical data storage, such as InfoSets, RemoteCubes, SAP RemoteCubes, and MultiProviders. InfoProviders are the objects or views that are relevant for reporting.

InfoCubes – Describes a self-contained dataset (from the reporting view), for example, for a business-oriented area. This dataset can be evaluated with the BEx query. An InfoCube is a set of relational tables that are created in accordance with the star schema: a large fact table in the center, with several dimension tables surrounding it.

DSO/ODS - DataStore Object/Operational Data Store object - Object that is used in the Tool BI part of Bank Analyzer to store master data and flow data in flat structures. A DataStore object contains key fields and data fields. There are DataStore objects for index tables of primary objects, and DataStore objects for the relevancy indicator as the basis for selecting data in the Source Data Layer.

MP – MultiProvider - Type of InfoProvider that combines data from several InfoProviders and makes it available for reporting. The MultiProvider itself contains no data; its data comes exclusively from the InfoProviders on which it is based (collated using a union operation). You can assemble a MultiProvider from different combinations of InfoProviders. MultiProviders, like InfoProviders, are objects or views that are relevant for reporting.

VP – VirtualProviders -
InfoProvider for which the transaction data is not saved in the object itself, but which is read directly for reporting. The data is stored in the BI system or in other SAP systems or non-SAP systems. Only read access to the data is permitted with a VirtualProvider.

ISet – InfoSet -
SAP Query element. InfoSets determine the tables, or fields within a table, to which a query can refer. InfoSets are usually based on table joins or logical databases.

ISP – InfoSpoke - Object for the export of data within the open hub service. Defined in the InfoSpoke are the following: from which open hub data source the data is extracted, in which extraction mode the data is delivered, and into which open hub destination the data is delivered.

IA – InfoArea -
Element for grouping meta-objects in the BI system. Each InfoProvider is assigned to an InfoArea. The resulting hierarchy is displayed in the Data Warehousing Workbench. In addition to their properties as an InfoProviders, InfoObjects can also be assigned to different InfoAreas.

TR – Transformation -
When data is loaded from one BI object to another BI object the data is run through a transformation. A transformation converts the records in a data package from the format of the source structure into the format of the target structure. A transformation consists of at least one transformation rule.

RT – Rule/Routine
(Start/End/Expert/Update/Transfer routine/rule) – Rule/routine where particular data object transformation is handled. It can be direct mapping from input to output, formula (FOX), ABAP routine, etc.

DTP - Data Transfer Process – It takes care about data ‘Distribution’ within SAP BI (from PSA or InfoProviders to InfoProviders).

AG – Aggregate -
Stores the dataset of an InfoCube redundantly and persistently in a summarized form on the database. When building an aggregate from the characteristics and navigation attributes of an InfoCube, you can group the data according to different aggregation levels. Remaining characteristics that are not used in the aggregate are summarized. New data is loaded into an aggregate using logical data packages (requests). You differentiate between filling and rolling up with regard to loading data. Aggregates enable you to access InfoCube data quickly for reporting. Thus, aggregates help to improve performance.

IS – InfoSource
(in BW 3.x) - Structure that consists of InfoObjects and is used as a non-persistent store to connect two transformations.

IP – InfoPackage
- Describes which data in a DataSource should be requested from a source system. The data can be precisely selected using selection parameters. An InfoPackage can request the following types of data: Transaction data, Attributes for master data, Hierarchies for master data, Master data texts

APD - Analysis Process Designer - Tool used to model an analysis process. The analysis process designer provides a graphical interface to model analysis processes. An analysis process is built using nodes and data flow arrows. The nodes stand for data sources, transformations and data targets. The dataflow arrows model the sequence in which the data is read and transformed.

PC - Process Chain - Sequence of processes that are scheduled in the background to wait for a particular event. Some of these processes trigger an additional event, which in turn can start other processes.

3. ETL layer

DS – DataSource (Extract/Transfer/Communication structure) - Contains a number of fields that are provided in a flat structure (the extraction structure) for data transfer to the Business Information Warehouse. A DataSource describes the properties of the related extractor with regard to the data transfer to the Business Information Warehouse.

EX - Extractor (Function Module, report, table view, BAPI, user exit, ...) – In most cases program used to fill the extraction structure of a DataSource with data from datasets in the SAP source system.

That’s it. Quite huge stuff. Please notice that I do not mention other BI staff in conjunction of SAP Portals (iviews, BEx porfolios, roles, Portal Connection Framework, INative) and other new SAP BI 7.0 objects like: UD Connect, Open Hub, SAP BI Connector, ResultSet API, query API, OLAP Query API, Java Metadata Interface, Common Client Interface, Business Intelligence Cockpit, BI SAP Query Connector, BI ODBO Connector, BI XMLA Connector, BI JDBC Connector, BI Java Connector, BI accelerator, BEx Broadcaster and finally I’m not mentioning SAP SEM objects like planning function/type/ sequence and other BI objects: metadata API, Metadata Repository, MDX, DB connect, Business Intelligence Java Software Development Kit

No comments: