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September 15, 2009

Connectors that Simply Connect: Are They Enough for Data Integration?

Filed under: Data Integration — Tags: , — Olga Belokurskaya @ 12:05 pm

What are connectors for data integration tools? Allowing to minimize or even avoid hand-coding required to move data out/into different data sources, they have become a significant part of data integration solutions. However, it’s not right to think, that simply having a bunch of connectors is always enough for easy and smooth data integration. Well, apart from providing connectivity, there may be some peculiar requirements to connectors. They are, according to John Bennett’s, a marketing consultant and business writer, whose article I’ve read lately:

  • Different level of security and access requirements for data sources. – In other words, integrating protected data, you need to ensure that it remains protected after the integration. This is especially actual for the data in the cloud.
  • The necessity of transformation. – Very often, data requires to be transformed somehow before being integrated in some application or another data source. This may be some data formats conversion or unification, etc.
  • Being a part of an integration solution that supports access controls, transformation, auditability, etc. – This means, ensuring that all operations over the data are complete, and data is up-to-date, before integrating it.

Well, what’s all this about? It’s obvious, that very often data needs a lot more than to be integrated as is. So searching for a data integration tool or solution, make sure its connectors can cope with the operations your data may require. Otherwise, you’ll still need lots of hand-coding which is not a pleasant (and cheap) thing, and there are risks of mistakes and bugs leading to data integration nightmares – the things you definitely wish to avoid. =)

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