Constraint-Based Multi-Dimensional Databases

Constraint-Based Multi-Dimensional Databases

Franck Ravat (Université Toulouse I, France), Olivier Teste (Université Toulouse III, France) and Gilles Zurfluh (Université Toulouse I, France)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-058-5.ch056
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This chapter deals with constraint-based multidimensional modelling. The model we define integrates a constellation of facts and dimensions. Along each dimension, various hierarchies are possibly defined and the model supports multiple instantiations of dimensions. The main contribution is the definition of intra-dimension constraints between hierarchies of a same dimension as well as inter-dimension constraints of various dimensions. To facilitate data querying, we define a multi-dimensional query algebra, which integrates the main multi-dimensional operators such as rotations, drill down, roll up… These operators support the constraint-based multi-dimensional modelling. Finally, we present two implementations of this algebra. First, OLAP-SQL is a textual language integrating multi-dimensional concepts (fact, dimension, hierarchy), but it is based on classical SQL syntax. This language is dedicated to specialists such as multi-dimensional database administrators. Second, a graphical query language is presented. This language consists in a graphical representation of multi-dimensional databases, and users specify directly their queries over this graph. This approach is dedicated to non-computer scientist users.

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