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May 28, 2015

Multidimensional Expressions: A Simple Explanation

Melissa Yu Posted by Melissa Yu


Multidimensional Expressions (MDX) is one of the more challenging languages in the BI world (M in PowerQuery is probably the next in line). It’s probably because our brains are trained to think relational and with MDX you have to think “layers”. I picked up DAX pretty easily, but kept searching for a way to understand MDX.

I’ve Googled, asked brilliant MDX coders, watched YouTube videos, etc., but I just couldn’t find a simple explanation. I have to admit, reading technical jargon is rough on my brain. Then I found this video and voila! Finally, someone who could explain MDX to me in English! Watching this video makes you feel like someone is sitting right next to you to explain MDX.

In this video, Rob explains the structure of an MDX query in relation to a SQL query, which is very helpful when trying to build your MDX query. He then goes on to explain what is different about MDX syntax (brackets, members, tuples) and how it is used. So tuple schnuple…watch this and you’ll be writing MDX in no time!

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Melissa Yu

About The Author

Melissa Yu

Melissa is a former Solutions Consultant at BlueGranite who specializes in BI and data visualization with tools including SQL Server and Power BI.

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