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Talend Open Studio and EIM

I discovered an amazing Open Source ETL tool the other day called Talend Open Studio. We’re working on a mini project at the moment to bring Contact and Account data in from Excel spreadsheets and thought this a good chance to try it out.

The tool itself is very intuitive, being based on the well proven Eclipse platform and offers a drag and drop graphical interface for constructing business processes and jobs.

It’s perfectly suited to loading EIM tables: simply set up source and destination metadata (data source) entries for your input data and Siebel database then bring in the EIM schemas for the destination tables that you’re interested in. A number of components can be dragged and linked between the two to do any number of mapping and transformation steps. If you’re familiar with Actuate in the Siebel context, you’ll have a real head start as the concept of ‘rows’ and their flow through the components is key. A little sample of one of the jobs I’m currently working on is below:

Projects can be created in both Java and Perl flavours: Java being somewhat more familiar to me but Perl sneaks ahead with performance and general scalability. A limitation in Java prevents overly complex jobs which made Perl the only choice on this occasion. Mapping expressions can be used, in the language of your choosing, to perform all sorts of complex transformations. You can even create your own functions and components, if you need to do something particular fancy. I found the mapping component (tMap) pretty much suited to everything I needed on this occasion.

I suggest downloading a copy, setting up a local test project and having a mess about – I’d be really interested to hear from anyone who finds the tool useful. I’m considering developing a suit of Siebel components – the tool currently supports Sugar CRM, SAP and a number of others out of the box – and a community approach to this would be excellent.