This report compiled and edited by Tony Shaw, Program Chair, Wilshire Conferences




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Project Management for Data Management Projects


Shelley Lieberman

Principal

Focused Solutions


Data projects like any other type of project require the discipline of Project Management. That means careful planning, monitoring, and reporting on the progress of the project. Planning requires a charter (a detailed description and requirements of the project), clear roles and responsibilities, and a project plan. Monitoring requires constant awareness of the quality of the project against cost, schedule, and scope. Reporting requires formal and informal status reporting to clients, IT, and project members, including accomplishments, issues, and next steps.


CMM & Data Management


Peter Aiken

Founding Director

VCU/Institute for Data Research


The Capability Maturity Model (CMM) was originally developed at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at Carnegie Mellon University, as a tool for the assessment, measurement and comparison of software and systems development practices. Recently, a number of independent initiatives have started to think about ways to incorporate data and metadata management practices into the existing CMM structures. Some have even suggested a specific Data Management CMM (DMCMM) could be developed. The SIG discussed a number of these efforts, their status and the groundswell of interest in a DMCMM.


Data Stewardship SIG


Robert Seiner

Publisher, TDAN.com

Principal, KIK Consulting


This facilitated session was spent with attendees exchanging ideas and posing/answering questions regarding their companies approaches to building & implementing a data stewardship program. The basic components of stewardship programs included:


- The process of identifying or assigning stewards, educating stewards and defining their involvement in the data management lifecycle.

- The recording of information (meta-data) about stewards to formalize accountability and make steward information available to business and technical knowledge workers.

- The importance of defining a pragmatic plan to get started and ways of measuring the success of stewardship programs.


ETL vs. EAI: A Comparison of Integration Approaches


Faisal Shah

Chief Technology Officer

Knightsbridge Solutions


ETL or EAI toolset choices should be driven first by corporate meta-information culture, then with consideration given to existing toolset investments and architectural fit. Organizations need to address ETL and EAI holistically and at the same time understand that there are still significant differences between the tools and ways to approach integration projects -- each treat latency, unit of work granularity, meta data integration, third-party product integration, and other product dimensions differently. While EAI and ETL tools continue to grow closer together, there are still significant advantages to using each for its original purpose, for instance ETL is data-centric and meta-data driven and is excellent at bulk data handling while EAI process-centric and event-driven.


Data Warehouse and Knowledge Management at the Fraser Health Authority


Mark Wise

Consultant

Wise Consulting Inc.


Doug Redwood

Knowledge Management Program Team Leader

Fraser Health Authority


These are turbulent times for publicly funded health care in BC. In 2001 a new government embarked on a program to revitalize a health care system that was running out of resources. Fifty-two health regions were merged into six authorities to reduce overhead. Labor contracts were adjusted to allow flexibility and wards, beds and hospitals have been re-configured in the name of efficiency. Today, problems in staffing nurses and doctors have reached crisis proportions. Public funding has been frozen and there is an intense focus on business performance. The FHA instituted a two pronged knowledge based approach to measure and improve regional performance. First, an initiative to focus on end to end business processes and identify their key performance measures. Second, to implement a data warehouse and BI technology to deliver measurement information to staff so they can meet new performance requirements.


An Introduction to Use Cases, Including Tough Use Case Issues


Christine Mandracchia

Manager - Data Administration

American Re-Insurance Company


Use Cases are increasingly being used as the mechanism to convey business and system requirements during application development projects. Christine covered a general introduction to Use Cases, including a brief history of Use Cases and the significant benefits that they provide. These benefits included a narrative form, in natural language, using a simple word processor, to structure the behavioral business requirements, such that they can be easily communicated, among multiple types of audiences, for project and scope management, as well as for testing preparation. She also covered the main Use Case sections and the Use Case Model, showing an example of each.


She discussed factors that made the Use Cases harder to create in her experience than the technique initially appeared. Some of these factors included the multiple audiences to be served, the "right" level of detail to be achieved, document management requirements for large projects, and terminology used, among others. She briefly addressed how Use Cases correlate with other project deliverables, such as the Object Class Model, User Experience Specification, and other static and dynamic modeling deliverables.


She suggested several areas where project guidelines regarding Use Cases should be established prior to the project start, for consistency of implementation, such as abridging Use Case documents to show changes since last iteration, not including presentation layer details, and using business terminology for data rather than object class model names, among other suggestions.


The insights that were presented were based upon her participation from a data modeling background in the object-oriented analysis activities for a RUP (Rational Unified Process) project which progressed through more than 20 iterations resulting in 3 production system releases during the past 3 years.


Her bottom line guidance was to determine, at the start of the project, what Use Case characteristics would work best for your organization, for your project, for your audiences, and then use reasonable judgment as the project progresses.


To Laugh or to Cry? More Fundamental Fallacies in Database Management


Fabian Pascal

Analyst, Editor and Publisher

Database Debunkings


A lot of what is being said, written, or done in the information management field by vendors, the trade press and "experts" is increasingly confused, irrelevant, misleading, or outright wrong. The problems are so acute that, claims to the contrary notwithstanding, knowledge, practices and technology are actually regressing! This presentation exposed more of the persistent misconceptions prevalent in the information/data management field and their costly practical consequences.


SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS

Tuesday, April 29

7:15 am – 8:15 am


Square Pegs in Round Holes? Managing XML Objects in an ISO/IEC 11179 Metadata Registry


Larry Fitzwater

Member of the Data Standards Branch

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)


Like data element metadata, XML objects have many management requirements best met through registry implementations. This presentation identifies commonalities between data element metadata and XML objects, and provides attendees with insights into how the EPA is exploring expansion of the 11179 MetaModel to accommodate XML schema, namespaces, and tags. It features examples of how XML tags are stored in the classification scheme region of the existing model and looks into the relationship between schema, tags, and namespaces, and additional classification scheme linkages. In addition to presenting a business case for the partnership of 11179 and XLM objects, the presentation identifies future considerations to the 11179 MetaModel. This presentation will be of interest to anyone tracking emerging XML issues and interested in registry management solutions.


Creating a Data Repository with DB2/UDB XML Extender


Dean Hein

Database Administrator

WEA Trust


1. DB2/UDB XML Extender gives you the following:

a) New DB2 Data Types

b) New DB2 User Defined Functions

c) New DB2 Stored Procedures

d) Ability to store Entire XML Document in a DB2 Table


2. It has two options:

a) XML Columns - Gives you the ability to store the entire XML Document in DB2 column.

b) XML Collections - Gives you the ability to insert an XML Document into several DB2 tables.

These tables can then be used to search the DB2 column to get the correct XML Document.


3. The DBA must create a Document Access Definition (DAD), it maps the XML structure (DTD) to the DB2 tables.


KEYNOTE PRESENTATION

Tuesday, April 29

8:45 am – 9:45 am


Trends in Data Administration


John Ladley

President

KI Solutions


In a rousing and often irreverent kick-off to the conference John Ladley’s key points were:

1) Information Management must emphasize its financial benefit to the organization, and integrate itself into everyday operations.

2) Meta data is not an elusive "nice to have" documentation facility, but will evolve into an active management tool of business components

3) The world of data administration is changing - DA and related postions must accept accountability and be proactive, or face extinction


CONFERENCE SESSIONS

Tuesday, April 29

10:15 am – 11:15 am


So, Management has decided to buy a Vendor Package...


Vickie Johnston

Data Analyst

United Parcel Service


So, Management has decided to buy a vendor package - The message is, stopping fighting it, packages are part of our reality. Get onboard and help your organization mitigate the risks. Get involved early, become "embedded" with the project team, use CMM to manage the vendor, submit requirements and acceptance criteria, participate in data mapping, obsolescence planning, interfaces, etc. -- In short prove your value and be a part of the solution.


Objects and Entities - Understanding Two Worlds.


Jim Goetsch

Data Architect

Schneider National, Inc.


Data Models and Object Models serve two different purposes. Data normalization can not be represented in a Class Model. Data Models do not drive Class Models nor the reverse. Because these two modeling activities often happen in parallel, it is important to reconcile differences in the attributes captured in both models. It is essential to have the Data Analyst be a member of the Application Development Team through Assessment/Analysis/Design/Construction/Testing.


Managing a Data Services Organization


Rolfe Jaremus

Senior Manager - Data Services

TransUnion, LLC


This presentation discussed how Transunion Corporation manages its database group where traditional data resource management practices are a key to their success. This presentation showed how they organized the data function, and how the mission and vision have driven success, including:

- Data Resource Management organizational principles, procedures, practices and standards

- Issues affecting central support teams

- Proving the worth of DRM. Keeping goals alive and visible

- Alignment with organizational principles

- Marketing and selling is not optional


Deriving Business Value from Enterprise Metadata Management


Todd Moore

Project Manager - Metadata Management

Royal Bank of Canada


The Enterprise Metadata Repository provides: an inventory of the Royal Bank of Canada’s (RBC) information assets; a documentation facility for RBC applications; the capability for impact analysis; and a map for data movement. Deployed in 1993 the repository provides value to both business and technical users via a customized web interface. Implemented as a general-purpose metadata management tool it has been significantly extended to meet specific and unique metadata requirements within RBC. The repository’s use has grown significantly in recent years and has become ingrained into work processes at the bank.


Web Services in Context


Dave McComb

President

Semantic Arts


Simon Hoare

Director

Semantic Arts


McComb and Hoare presented a clear definition of what Web Services are, and how they work. Key points were that each of the key players (Integrators, Application developers, Architects and Data Administrators) see Web Services as something different, and if unchecked will work at cross purposes. Application developers see web services as component technology, Integrators see it as a replacement for Message Brokers, Architects see it as a shift to Service Oriented Architecture and Data Administrators will soon be seeing it as a way to manage replicated data.


XML: The Data Management Enabler


Evan Levy

Partner

Baseline Consulting


* XML isn't just a single technology, but a family of technologies that will greatly simplify all aspects of data access -- structure, presentation, and integration.

* XML is an evolutionary step in extending the benefits of the Data Warehouse.

* The value delivered by XML is improved speed and simplification of data implementation.

* Data Administration and Management is critical to leverage the benefits of XML


Essential Database Design Patterns


Joe Oates

BI Chief Architect

Sybase, Inc.


Most organizations are interested in developing software more quickly, with higher quality, with reduced total ownership costs. Probably the best solution is to use database design problems. The reason for this statement is that it is much less expensive and time consuming, as well as having much less impact to critical business systems, to redesign and re-implement a block of code than it is to redesign your database structure. A database design pattern is a solution to a problem that occurs routinely. A really good pattern will work for all cases all the time.


This presentation discussed a small number of design patterns that can have an enormous positive impact on schedules and costs. Additionally, it showed the only practical way to have a “single view” of a customer for an enterprise.

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