Analysis Services Concepts
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Analysis Services (SSAS) provides online analytical processing (OLAP) and data mining functionality for business intelligence solutions. Before designing a business intelligence solution using Analysis Services, you should familiarize yourself with the OLAP and data mining concepts required for a successful solution.
Analysis Services combines the best aspects of traditional OLAP-based analysis and relational-based reporting by enabling developers to define a single data model, called a Unified Dimensional Model (UDM) over one or more physical data sources. All end user queries from OLAP, reporting, and custom BI applications access the data in the underlying data sources through the UDM, which provides a single business view of this relational data.
Analysis Services provides a rich set of data mining algorithms to enable business users to mine their data looking for specific patterns and trends. These data mining algorithms can be used to analyze data through a UDM or directly from a physical data store.
For more information, see the Additional Resources section on the SQL Server 2005 – Analysis Services page on the Microsoft TechNet Web site.