Play Without Pay: Company Offers Eval Edition of Semantic Data Integration System

Loraine Lawson

No doubt you've heard of semantic data integration-or, at least, you have if you read this blog regularly. Hint, hint.


It's all fine and well to read about something, but sometimes you've got to roll up your sleeves and really try it out to understand how it would-or wouldn't-work for you.


And now you can. expressor software is offering a free 30-day evaluation edition of its hosted semantic data integration system.


expressor software has been around since 2003, and at its core, it is an ETL tool. But last year, when it released an semantic data integration system, it received attention from several prestigious research groups.


Gartner named expressor in its March list of "Cool Vendors in Data Management and Integration." The new tool also received upbeat reviews from Philip Howard, a research director with Bloor Research, and Dr. Dave Waddington, senior vice president and head of research for The Information Difference.


Both analysts were impressed with the fact that expressor was built from the ground up to incorporate features other vendors have 'tacked on' over the years. And both liked expressor's main differentiator - the semantic awareness, which Howard explained thusly:


"Specifically, expressor is semantically-aware. That is to say, it knows that customer# is the same thing as customer_no, which is the same as customer ID and so on. What that means in practice is two things: first, it means that the environment is much easier for business analysts to use in collaboration with developers, because it is using common terminology and, secondly, it means that mappings between sources and targets that have these equivalents can be automated and do not need to be specified."


Waddington also thought companies might be able to realize a lower total cost of ownership with expressor's pricing models, which include a usage-based runtime option, meaning you're charged only for the number of channels you use. He added that expressor offered 'hundreds and thousands' of built-in data item correlations for a range of vertical markets.


This year, a second expressor release added support for metadata integration.


The evaluation edition allows developers to create, test, modify and run expressor drawings-using expressor illustrator, a visual integration design tool-on up to four projects. It also includes free technical support, and your developers will have access to all product documentation. You can access it without a software download through Microsoft's Remote Desktop Services. More technical details about the free tool are available in the press release.

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Sep 9, 2009 10:03 AM Michael Waclawiczek Michael Waclawiczek  says:


We are very excited about the hosted expressor eval edition, a project we started a couple of months back.  We have beta tested this edition with more than two dozen users from various end user and partner companies and are confident that it will greatly improve our ability to quickly introduce new ETL/DI users to expressor and for them to evaluate our offering around our semantic data integration capabilities, our high-performance data processing engine, and the overall strength of our developer tool, which is based on Microsoft Visio.

Dr. Michael Waclawiczek

VP Marketing


Sep 9, 2009 6:20 PM Chad Zezula Chad Zezula  says:

I was one of the first architects allowed to test drive the expressor eval site, and I was very pleased with my experience.  As you stated in your blog, one of expressor's main differentiators is its use of smart semantics.  The eval edition helped me grasp the power behind smart semantics that a paragraph just couldn't convey to me.

Sep 13, 2009 6:21 PM Gauri Ghare Gauri Ghare  says:

I tested the eval-edition of Expressor and found it an excellent toolset.  I think it has been designed and developed with great understanding of real-world problems of data integration. The working of its semantic layer, storage and application of business rules is very impressive. The visual tools make the source and destination data mapping easier to design and execute, and metadata storage simple, which I think is very important in data integration process.  Expressor can handle a variety of input files which is quite important as we see a lot of different technology usage within an organization and more so in corporate mergers. I am very impressed with this simple but elegant toolset.

Gauri Ghare

Data Warehouse Administrator, Jacobi Medical Center

Adjunct Professor, Pace University

DBA - Clout Program, Pace University

Sep 16, 2009 8:32 AM Harold Pryor Harold Pryor  says:

Harold Pryor

I participated in testing the eval-edition of Expressor and was very impressed with the product. This product is very robust in the integration tools it provides for the price. I was very impressed by the semantic layer, version control, team development capabilities, project management, the flow design graphical interface, and role-based security product provides. With expressor s sematic approach of using common terminology much of the correlation and mapping is done much easier, thereby significantly reducing the effort and time involved in defining data integration processes.

Harold Pryor

Data Integration Consultant

Acxius Strategic Consulting, LLC

Sep 16, 2009 12:53 PM Arthur King Arthur King  says:

Loraine, I am reading your blog from time to time. This time have a mixing filling and decided to express my self.

First question, is it a prepaid post?? It sounds like because the promotion is blunt, including  first comments. It sounds a little bit naive too.

Besides, as you might know all data integration or data management software vendors offer a free trial. Otherwise how you can buy such a tool without knowing what it is. Expressor is a newcomer into space where many established players and it would be a mistake for them not to give a free eval. Expressor might be  a nice tool, but why this fact of free 30 days trial makes it a news for you? Just curious.

Take care,



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