It's important to know that the BI capabilities outlined in the topic PerformancePoint Server and other BI products, are not going away and in fact will be even more accessible in Office SharePoint Server. Microsoft has several business intelligence tools and the type of problem you are trying to solve will help determine the right tool for you.
We work in a world of objects, shapes, and symbols and we don't know a lot without these. The marks we put onto paper to write something or the shapes we put in a diagram are not very useful until the meaning of the marks or shapes is brought to our minds by experience and learning. I like to see shapes put together in such a way that I can understand difficult concepts or have an larger picture or view of an otherwise tangled mess -kind of like getting above the trees to see where I am going. The following diagram shows the BI stack -sometimes called the BI burger. Because there are several BI tools to choose from, I decided to create a “50,000 feet view” diagram.
1. Gemini is an extension or an upgrade to Excel BI. Gemini adds support for very large scale data but without user requirements. It has an in-memory data store as an option for Analysis Services. Once the data is loaded into the Microsoft in-memory data engine it can be published to a SharePoint Server. Discussed here.
2. The announcement to incorporate Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server 2007 into Microsoft Office SharePoint Server Enterprise edition as “PerformancePoint Services.” allows you to take advantage of the PerformancePoint Server features.
3. PerformancePoint Server is related to the data warehouse, discussed on TechNet here.
4. It will be easier to maintain a “single source of the truth” with a Master Data Management system. Since the purchase of Stratature, mentioned here, Microsoft will have a technology and process to maintain consistent and accurate lists of master data.
5. Various source data can include flat files, excel spreadsheets, and others.