Power Query 1/4 – What is it?

Power Query is Microsoft’s Data Connectivity and Data Preparation technology that lets you seamlessly access data stored in hundreds of sources and reshape it to fit your needs—all with an easy to use, engaging, no-code experience. (their words – not mine).

Okay then, so what does that mean? It means that anyone who has access to use Excel now has access to use a no-code ETL tool (extract, transform, and load). ETL tools such as Power Query enable us to grab data from one or more locations and pull that data into a single model which we can use to answer business questions.

Power Query’s core feature is the “Applied Steps” functionality which is the automated step-by-step process created as we manipulate data into the format we want.  Saving these “Applied Steps” in this way allows us to simply hit a refresh button and run through these steps each time we want to get the latest information.

In tomorrow’s post, I’ll dig into how Power Query fits into PowerBI (and AAS) from an architectural perspective.

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