Glossary of Terms
Ad-Hoc Data Extract - User can select rows and columns directly from the database through a point and click interface. The IUIE generates the query behind the scenes and return the data to the user. In the IUIE environment, data is extracted from datagroups and can be returned in a web browser window or loaded into a spreadsheet, word document, etc. (see Datagroup)
Ad-hoc Report - A report generated dynamically at the Information Consumer's request.
Base Table - Tables in the Data Warehouse that exactly match the structure and content of the operational data and which are generally available only to Data Managers (not DSS customers). Data is extracted from these base tables and modeled for easy reporting/analysis into datagroups.
Cross-subject Area Data - The intersection of data across functional areas. Similar to Student-Financial data.
Data Mart - A database, or collection of databases, designed to help managers make strategic decisions about their business. Whereas a data warehouse combines databases across an entire enterprise, data marts are usually smaller and focus on a particular subject or department.
Data Warehouse - A data collection -- prepackaged or summarized according to specific business rules and designed to support management decision making. Data warehouses contain a wide variety of data that present a coherent picture of business information.
Database Security - Selective access restrictions enforced through database-defined groups. Security constraints are implemented within the database as opposed to being in the different tools accessing the database.
Datagroup - A table or file in the data warehouse that has been modeled such that the development of reports and execution of queries is easier for the Information Consumer. A datagroup normally contains data that has been pulled from several different tables. It contains expanded descriptions instead of hard to understand codes. It may also contain summarized and/or precalculated data.
Denormalized Data - (See Normalized Data ) Data is "denormalized" in DSS systems to reduce the number of tables that the programmer or Information Consumer needs to join together to obtain useful information.
DSS/Decision Support System - An information environment, including data stores and access tools, specifically designed for reporting and analysis.
Effective Dating - PeopleSoft-specific. The time period during which data in tables are valid. Effective dating adds flexibility to operational systems, but presents challenges in designing DSS datagroups.
Groups - Generally related to security; a category of users who have access to certain data, or have a category of privileges specific to a certain groups.
Inbox - A folder in Personal Catalog which will receive notification of completion of reports. The notification will contain an URL to view the completed report.
IUDSS - Indiana University Decision Support System. See DSS.
IUIE - Acronym for Indiana University Information Environment. The IUIE is a web based application that serves as a one-stop shopping environment for all types of institutional reporting needs for all functional areas
IC/Information Consumer - User of IUIE, from the perspective of executing reports and obtaining data extracts. An IC has no publishing rights and will have access to Report Objects as defined by an IP.
IP/Information Provider - An individual who is intimately familiar with the data and data structures for a particular subject area and is also familiar with the business processes and rules associated with the data for their area. With this knowledge, they develop (in partnership with the IARS team) and publish report objects (standard reports, datagroups, pre-defined queries, etc.) for Information Consumers to use via the IUIE. An Information Provider (IP) will help establish the folder structure of the IUIE Master Catalog and work with associated Data Managers and IARS development partner in establishing appropriate Roles and Groups that will control access to their report objects. Additionally, IPs will work with other Information Providers in providing suggestions for future enhancements to the IUIE application.
Master Catalog - A comprehensive listing of all Report Objects available in the IUIE. Anyone using IUIE will see the complete listings and metadata for each report, but will only have access to the data if approved by an IP.
Metadata - In general, data about data, such as descriptions of database tables or fields. In the IUIE, there is metadata information about Report Objects.
My Catalog - A collection of folders, both default and user-created , used to group Report Objects into meaningful categories. By default, an IUIE user will receive three folders: an inbox folder, a new shortcut folder, and a completed reports folder. The user may also create folders into which shortcuts to reports from the Master Catalog may be placed.
Normalized Data - In relational database design, the process of organizing data to minimize duplication. Normalization usually involves dividing information into many database tables and defining relationships between the tables. The objective is to isolate data so that additions, deletions, and modifications of a field can be made in just one table and then propagated through the rest of the database via the defined relationships.
ODS - Operational Data Store - An exact copy, of both structure and data, from the operational system to the Data Warehouse. Not de-normalized. Primarily used as a source for building datagroups, or for special-purpose queries for Data Managers.
OLAP - Online Analytical Processing, a category of software tools that provides analysis of data stored in a database. OLAP tools enable users to analyze different dimensions of multidimensional data. For example, it provides time series and trend analysis views. The chief component of OLAP is the OLAP server, which sits between a client and a database management systems (DBMS). The OLAP server understands how data is organized in the database and has special functions analyzing the data.
OLAP Cube - Multidimensional set of data used for dynamic analysis
OLTP - On Line Transaction Processing-- A type of computer processing in which the computer responds immediately to user requests. Each request is considered to be a transaction. Registering students for classes or updating employee benefits are examples of transaction processing.
Operational System - The OLTP system from which the DSS system derives its data.
Parameter - A variable used to narrow the records returned in a query. e.g. Entering NW to return only records for the Northwest campus, entering a particular semester/year to return only records for a given semester.
Parm-driven query - A special type of pre-defined query which allows the Information Consumer to supply parameters that will determine the content of the formatted report. (see Pre-Defined Query)
Password - A secret series of characters that enables a user to access a file, computer, or program.
Point-in-time Data - A snapshot of data taken from a specific time. (i.e. census data, monthly operating report).
Pre-Defined Query (PDQ) - A query or program that has been previously written by an Information Provider or programmer. A pre-defined query will produce a formatted report. Although the query is written in advance, the Information Consumer can run these queries on demand. The Information Provider does not schedule these queries to run on a regular basis.
Publication - Another term for Report Object. A publication may be either a report which would be accessed in its entirety, a report which would be pared down by either user-entered parameters or SQL which would generate a report on the fly, or a datagroup.
Publishing - The act of placing a Report Object in production to make it available to Information Consumers with proper access to the report (see Report Object)
Reference Tables - Look up tables that generally contain a code and an expansion of the code (such as a table that maps the code "BL" to the campus name "Bloomington").
Report Object - A listing in the Master Catalog or Personal Catalog of the IUIE, representing a datagroup, a PDQ, metadata, an Ad-hoc report.
Reports Viewing Software - Software program utilized to view static or dynamic reports.
Roles - A category related to access or functionality. Examples: Information Provider, Information Consumer
Shortcut - Placing a link to a Report Object from the Master Catalog in one's Personal Catalog.
SQR - A programming language for database processing and reporting.
Standard Operational Report - A Standard Report is a report that is executed on a regularly scheduled basis by Data Managers or Operational Managers or as part of the operational batch schedule. When it runs it usually runs for the entire population, not just for a specific user or school or student, but rather for all schools or all students. Operational reports are typically needed for the ongoing day-to-day business of the university. (see Static Report )
Static Document - Generally refers to a report that does not change. Accessing the report will always return exactly the same information--no change to data.
Static Report - A static report is a report that has been developed by an Information Provider and is run on a regular basis. The consumers for these reports can not change the report content by providing different parameters. A Standard Operational Report is one example of a static report. (see Standard Operational Report )
Summarized Data - Analysis of the data has already occurred and a summary of the analysis is presented.
Userid - A unique identification of a person as it relates to accessing data or a system. Userid - A unique identification of a person as it relates to accessing data or a system.
Wildcard - A symbol used to return all values of a parameter. Wildcards used in the IUIE are the symbol * (asterisk).