Configurable Web Warehouses construction through BPM Systems
CLEI Electronic Journal
The process of building Data Warehouses (DW) is well known with well defined stages but at the same time, mostly carried out manually by IT people in conjunction with business people. Web Warehouses (WW) are DW whose data sources are taken from the web. We define a flexible WW, which can be configured accordingly to different domains, through the selection of the web sources and the definition of data processing characteristics. A Business Process Management (BPM) System allows modeling and
... ws modeling and executing Business Processes (BPs) providing support for the automation of processes. To support the process of building flexible WW we propose a two BPs level: a configuration process to support the selection of web sources and the definition of schemas and mappings, and a feeding process which takes the defined configuration and loads the data into the WW. In this paper we present a proof of concept of both processes, with focus on the configuration process and the defined data. Introduction In last years the amount of data generated on the web has grown considerably, being one of the current key challenges to be able to effectively collect and analyze it, in order to gain usable information. In this context, Web Warehouses (WW) are Data Warehouses (DW) whose data sources are taken from the web. They are a valuable tool for analysis and decision making based for example, on open government data , in many different areas. We define a flexible WW, which can be configured accordingly to different domains, through the selection of the corresponding web sources and the definition of data processing characteristics. This WW is implemented through a general platform that is configured for each domain, or particular case it will be used. The general platform is built according to an architecture that is suitable for different WWs  . Although the process of building DW is well known with well defined stages, it is still mostly carried out manually by IT people in conjunction with business people. Business Process Management Systems (BPMS)  provide tool support for the Business Process Management (BPM)   vision in organizations. This kind of software integrates different tools to support the complete BPs lifecycle , mainly modeling BPs and executing them in a compatible process engine. One of the many benefits associated with this vision is that BP models provide an explicitly view on which activities are performed to reach the organization goals, how things are done by whom, when they are done, and which artifacts are used and generated. Nowadays, one of the most used notations for modeling and executing BPs is the Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN 2.0)  standard from OMG, which provides not only a notation for modeling BPs but also a defined semantic for its elements, making it also executable. Also, it is easily understandable by business people and it has been embraced both at the academic and industry level as a way to communicate between business and IT people  . Based on the previous analysis, we propose a two Business Process (BPs) level vision to help define and automate the process of building flexible WW: at the first level, a configuration process to support the selection of web sources and the definition of schemas and mappings, which is mostly carried out manually, and at the second level, a feeding process that takes the defined configuration and loads the data into the WW, which is performed mostly automatically. Both the configuration and the feeding processes are modeled as BPs in the BPMN 2.0 notation and executed in the BPMS Activiti  . The main reasons for selecting this tool were that it implements the BPMN 2.0 standard and it is open source. In previous work  we have presented the initial idea of building a Quality-aware WW with BPs in BPMN 2.0, and since then we have split the proposal into two projects mainly corresponding to the two processes defined: the configuration process, which we have worked on last year, and the feeding process based on configuration data, adding quality data to both processes, in which we are working now. Data quality is taken into account when building the WW, to obtain information about the quality of data provided to the user, and to improve quality of data throughout the WW process.