Purpose of a Dimension Calculation View
A dimension calculation view is used to expose master data from source tables. You can combine multiple data sources, define filters, calculate additional attributes, and create hierarchies to provide a meaningful view of master data. A dimension calculation view is a highly-reusable, centralized object that provides consistent data. You would typically define a dimension calculation view and share it with other colleagues who would consume it in their own calculation views.
Dimension calculation views are only built from attributes. They do not include measures. Every column from the data source is treated as an attribute. This means that any numerical column in the source record, such as price or salary, is treated as an attribute and not a measure. This means when you query a dimension calculation view, a complete list of every single individual value in the source is produced in the output. Even the numerical values such as quantities are listed individually and not aggregated. If you want to sum values then you need a cube calculation view where it is possible to define measures.
If you would like to produce only a distinct list of attribute values, you can specify aggregation on any column. Then each unique value appears only once in the result.
A dimension calculation view does not need to be based only on a single table. You can combine master data tables in a dimension. For example, you could join the customer table to the customer contacts table to generate a comprehensive view of customer information.
Although dimension calculation views can be directly consumed by most reporting tools, it is more likely that your dimension calculation views will be consumed in cube calculation views.
Sharing Dimension Calculation Views
Dimension calculation views are reusable objects and can be shared between several cube calculation views.
For example, the product dimension can be used in a purchase order cube calculation view and also in a sales order cube calculation view. Both cube calculation views require information about products. The dimension calculation view provides that shared information.