10.3. THE STAR SCHEMA
Now that you have been introduced to the STAR schema, let us take a simple example and examine its characteristics. Creating the STAR schema is the fundamental data design technique for the data warehouse. It is necessary to gain a good grasp of this technique.
10.3.1. Review of a Simple STAR Schema
We will take a simple STAR schema designed for order analysis. Assume this to be the schema for a manufacturing company and that the marketing department is interested in determining how they are doing with the orders received by the company.
Figure 10-7 shows this simple STAR schema. It consists of the orders fact table shown in the middle of schema diagram. Surrounding the fact table are the four dimension tables of customer, salesperson, order date, and product. Let us begin to examine this STAR schema. Look at the structure from the point of view of the marketing department. The users in this department will analyze the orders using dollar amounts, cost, profit margin, and sold quantity. This information is found in the fact table of the structure. The users will analyze these measurements by breaking down the numbers in combinations by customer, salesperson, date, and product. All these dimensions along which the users will analyze are found in the structure. The STAR schema structure is a structure that can be easily understood by the users and with which they can comfortably work. The structure mirrors how the users normally view their critical measures ...