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The irresistible crunch of SAP’s Layered, Scalable Architecture

by Scott Wallask

November 8, 2011

By Scott Wallask, SAPexperts

At the urging of my brother, I recently checked out the unorthodox comedy of Dairy Queen’s commercials on YouTube. One of the spots shows a bubble-blowing man extolling the virtues of the fast food chain’s layered ice cream cakes (“irresistible fudge and crunch between layers of vanilla and chocolate”).

Even from that aspect, it’s clear a layered approach is appealing, so it should be no surprise that the caveman-like lessons of ice cream cake somehow apply to the SAP BI world. After all, structure has its place, writes consultant George Campbell-Kelly of Bluefin Solutions in his new BI Expert article, “Deliver Tangible Benefits to Performance and Flexibility with Layered, Scalable Architecture.”

“Layering is helpful because it allows you to think about your system in a methodical way,” Campbell-Kelly says. Layered, Scalable Architecture, or LSA, describes an SAP method to structuring data in your BI system. Each layer tackles a different task (e.g., converting values into valid types, delivering delta records, aggregating data).

It sounds simple, doesn’t it? But Campbell-Kelly quickly points out that confusion abounds over LSA, and his BI Expert article aims to break the fog and explain its already-well-known concepts.

For example, in a sales reporting system, sales and delivery extractors are common features. Both of those features are part of the source system layer within the LSA. Campbell-Kelly walks you through the nine LSA layers, and for the cherry on top, he also discusses HANA’s impact on the LSA.

If you’re a subscriber, log in to BI Expert to read the full article. If not, check out the benefits of reading BI Expert.

Follow Scott on Twitter @BI_expert

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