The Tax Warehouse


Tax Form

Hopefully those if you in the US got your taxes filed on time for the recent April 15 deadline. Personally I hate dealing with the preparation so much I had to file an extension. I have a CPA to help, but my wife and I hate just compiling and sorting all the information. Maybe we need a database of some sort 😉

Apparently the US Internal Revenue Service has a high speed, fancy data warehouse that allows them to decide whether or not a particular taxpayer should be audited. What's more interesting is that all of the meta data is in SQL Server. I'm not sure why they seem to use a large Sybase database to house the returns and SQL Server for the metadata, but they did it. It is interesting to note the Sybase database is a column based database, which means very quick reads. Perfect for their purposes.

It also shows some flexibility in the agency, choosing to use multiple technologies and blending them together to build a useful system. SQL server is being used heavily and at this scale, it shows how successful SQL Server can integrated into what was likely an all mainframe and *Nix based environment years ago.

My guess is that in the next evolution of the IRS systems, SQL Server will be playing a much larger role in storing tax data.

Steve Jones

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