Compiled and edited by Tony Shaw, Program Chair, Wilshire Conferences, Inc




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Craig Mullins


WICCA -- Things will be getting more wireless, more intelligent, more connected, more complex and more automated:


Wireless – pervasive computing and pervasive management

Intelligent – software with built-in ability to adapt

Connected – bridges being cobbled together for the islands of information, applications talking to one another, business and technology connecting to deliver true value to the organization

Complex – more bells and whistles added to our DBMS and management tools making them harder to understand without…

Automation – tools that use built-in intelligence to move toward self-management


Additional NBT ideas were taken from the audience, including:

  • RFID – Radio Frequency Identification – poised to generate a deluge of new data, and give rise to enormous privacy concerns

  • Privacy and security

  • Outsourcing will continue, especially on automatable tasks



Optimizing the Value of Metadata for Business People


Hans Yeager

Partner

SH Group


If you ask a businessperson if metadata is important to them, he or she will more than likely say “no”. If, however, you ask them whether it is important to know how an element in a report was calculated, or to know how current the information is, or to know from where the information was obtained, you’ll likely get affirmative answers on all counts. This presentation helped the audience understand what is involved in delivering a practical business intelligence solution and covered the following key areas.


  • Metadata that is important to business people

  • Approaches to managing metadata

  • Idea places to manage business metadata

  • Business intelligence software metadata integration



KEYNOTE PRESENTATION

Wednesday, May 5

2:45 pm – 3:45 pm


Universal Priciples of Integration


Len Silverston

President

Universal Data Models, LLC


How can we move towards integration versus disintegration? Why are some organizations able to integrate their data and systems better than others? Len Silverston, best-selling author, will share experiences, universal principles, and recommendations regarding effective ways to integrate data and systems. This keynote address covered issues such as:

  • Creating a fertile environment for data integration efforts. The principle of “Integration requires trust” was discussed as well as how to create a space where integration can happen.

  • Gaining support for data integration efforts by offering business value. The principle “Keep sight of the goal” sheds light on how to provide ongoing value.

  • Dealing with conflict, understanding differing perspectives, and managing ego. The principle of “First understand oneself, then understand others, then be understood by others” provides a context for resolving data management disputes.

  • Learning from the past and re-using models that have worked. The principle of “Learning from experience is powerful” was discussed as well as how reusable models, such as Universal Data Models, have helped organizations move towards integration.


The goal of this presentation was to share a picture of what integration looks like, what disintegration looks like, and principles that you can put into practice to move towards integration.


SPECIAL INTEREST GROUPS

Wednesday, May 5

5:30 pm – 6:30 pm


Universal Process Models - Re-usable, holistic templates for the "other" side of the coin.


Len Silverston

President

Universal Data Models, LLC


Just as “universal data models” offer re-usable components for quickly developing data models and data warehouse designs, there are many common processes that occur throughout various enterprises. For example, most enterprises have processes regarding marketing, sales, order processing, shipping, invoicing, collections, and accounting. While processes will vary from one organization to another organization, there are many processes that are very similar and process models can be re-used (and/or customized) in order to provide additional perspectives, quality checks, as well as providing templates for developing process models more quickly. This session discussed practical, re-usable, process models to facilitate quicker development of process models for common functions. Practitioners will often develop an enterprise process model in addition to an enterprise data model. Why re-invent the wheel regarding common processes such as contacting sales leads or checking credit history?


Net Centric Data Strategy SIG


Michael Gorman

President

Whitemarsh Information Systems Corporation


There was about 10 persons attending this special interest group. The goal of the meeting was to present, discuss, and receive input regarding DoD's 7 Net Centric Data Goals. The US Department of Defense "Net Centric" Data Strategy is aimed at making data assets more visible, accessible and understandable to all the various stakeholders. The discussion was lively and very constructive. A summary of the comments for each goal will be constructed and will be submitted both to the U.S. Army and to a key individual within the Office of the Secretary of the DoD (Tony Simon). A further discussion was held regarding the need to have a more formal user group on "data issues" within the DoD.


CONFERENCE SESSIONS

Thursday, May 6

8:30 am – 9:30 am


Establishing Best Practices within American Century's Data Services Department


Kevin Phelps

Data Analyst - Specialist

American Century Investments, Inc.


American Century Investments Data Services Department has been establishing its Best Practices through:

  • The Introduction and Utilization of Work Flow between DA, DBA, and application areas; Data Modeling Standards, & Data Administration Metrics

  • Creating and applying an I.T. Four Year Plan & subsequently the Data Administration Operating Model

  • By defining and launching our Metadata Direction & XML Direction, and

  • By participating in the Architecture Working Group, a forum for sharing best practices.



Driving Strategic Direction and Results for Enterprise Data Architecture at Intel


Gregg Wyant

Chief Data Architect

Intel Corporation


The Chief Data Architect at Intel Corporation discussed the challenges of introducing Data Architecture as a major management initiative in a large and distributed manufacturing company. The major challenge is to illustrate to senior management the strategic advantages of establishing an Enterprise Data Architecture, simplifying tools and methods, managing information with the same care as the company manages other valuable assets. He also showed his CIO level why central administration of data can actually free businesses users to develop more creative and useful local applications, and add greater data security. Mention was made of the power of the Zachman framework to direct individual efforts, and Data Quality, to locate systems of origin and records of reference that could serve the needs of the company with consistently defined business information. Key points were:

  • Establish Enterprise Data Architecture org and Chief Data Architect role

  • Base Enterprise Architecture on Zachman Framework

  • Mandate Common Tools and Governance Process across organization

  • All data (and its associated metadata) aligned to the Enterprise Model

  • Data security centrally administered; data access centrally controlled



Putting "Place" in the Database - Spatial Information Storage and Use


Paul Baynham

Senior Systems Analyst

PlanGraphics, Inc.


Location information is no longer consigned to the specialized realm of Geographic Information Systems software packages and gurus. More and more mainline commercial RDBMS support datatypes and storage solutions for location information. We as data managers will be exposed increasingly to these new data sets that describe location in new ways, and we will need the tools and systems in place to manage these data. In general, most location information has been geographic, thus the acronym GIS. But location applies to many things, and databases will be storing and using information about many things besides geographic locations. The mapping of the human genome uses an Oracle datatype to store the gene locations. Virtual buildings can have their layouts stored in spatial coordinates independent of any geographic system. New York City's non-emergency 311 telephone service uses location information to respond to callers' queries about the nearest library, park or police station. Once these types of information are stored in databases, then the job of spatial data management falls to the IT department and DBA. This is an exciting new element in the field of data management, and one to which not many of us have yet been exposed, but we will be more and more. It is time to get ourselves up to date on location data management and the metadata without which its use will be so limited.


What Your Mother Never Told You about Meta Data

(Including, No One Makes Their Own Bootstraps!!)


Richard Weimar, Jr.

Senior Consultant

State of Michigan


We have just successfully completed the first phase of the meta-Data Repository for the State of Michigan’s welfare organization, The Family Independence Agency (FIA). We have progressed from being “green as gourd guts” to relatively sophisticated journeymen about what meta-data is, its true value and how to manage it to benefit the business. We were surprised by the significant potential value and power in good meta-data of broad scope which we had not considered initially. We are beginning to take advantage of these attributes. The key is - No one does this successfully by themselves. Other people have good ideas too! Accepting this up front and using it as the driving principle will significant contribute to a successful project.


Refactoring Metadata: Finding Architectural Compatibility through Structural Comparisons


Baden Hughes

Senior Research Associate

University of Melbourne


A plethora of metadata standards are emerging, often founded in different descriptive traditions, and documenting an increasing variety of objects. As a consequence, there is an increasing need to be able to compare, merge or translate metadata between different standards. Prior to the conversion between different metadata standards, an interoperability analysis must first be undertaken to ensure that the correspondences between XML architectural components (namespaces, schemas, DTDs) and XML documents (elements, nodes) are understood and any incompatibilities resolved. Methods for such analysis are often complex, and require reference to formal standards in order to clarify structural relations. With the growth of metadata catalogues, there is increasing importance of automated methods for such large scale analysis and conversion tasks.


The Return of the Data Warehouse: This Time It's for Real


Neil Raden

President

Hired Brains, Inc.


  • Data Warehousing was a flawed concept from the beginning and the relentless progress of Moore's Law is placing enormous pressure on it to change or get out of the way. Most companies will need to scrap or wrap their DW's in the next 3-5 years

  • The abundance of computing resources and bandwidth argues against excessively careful design and data modeling for performance, including data warehouses themselves

  • Professionals should begin to refocus on more productive activities, such as broadening the scope of Business Intelligence or developing amazing software to manage the physical aspects of BI such as ETL, Materialization, federation, tuning, etc

  • Vendors like Netezza and Ab Initio are disruptive (in the sense of Clayton Christiansen) and will cause established vendors to morph or fail

  • Metadata in data warehousing is mostly ineffective, used for CYA documentation or, once in a while, impact analysis. It needs to be put in motion by new models of abstraction that are powerful middleware that hide all physical aspects of the system

  • Role-based security is still a manual process, because the investments in metadata have failed to yield a rich enough metamodel that roles can be directly related to domains



PANEL: How to Get Business and Data Professionals Interacting


Larry Dziedzic

John Zachman

Michael Brackett

Jorge Yero

Larissa Moss


There is a major chasm at Row Three in the Zachman Framework: a major disconnect between the information that business needs to operate successfully and the databases managed by IT. The growing disparity of the data resource is severely hampering the growth and success of most public and private sector organizations. Basic principles of modeling data to meet business needs, proper normalization of the data, and the real power that can be supplied by database management systems seem to have been forgotten. Business and data management seem to be on separate and diverging paths.


This panel considered questions such as:

  • What is needed to close the Row Three chasm and build a high-quality data resource that meets the ever-changing information needs of the business?

  • How can a high-quality data resource be built that will supply high-quality information to an intelligent learning organization?

  • What needs to be done to return to the basic principles that have already been established?



CONFERENCE SESSIONS

Thursday, May 6

9:50 am – 10:50 am


The Agile Data Method: A Roadpath for Modernizing Data-Oriented Activities


Scott Ambler

President and Senior Consultant

Ronin International, Inc.


  • Modern software development processes are evolutionary (iterative and incremental) in nature, and many are agile

  • Agile software development is not a fad, it works and is here to stay

  • Data professionals must adopt evolutionary development techniques to remain relevant, and better yet they should strive to be agile

  • Evolutionary data techniques such as agile model driven development (AMDD), test driven development (TDD), and database refactoring are described at www.agiledata.org

  • Data professionals and developers are relatively ignorant of the techniques of the other, but they must learn these techniques if they're to work together effectively

  • You need to choose to work effectively with developers, otherwise they can and will ignore you



How to Make Data Quality Indispensable


Paul Nettle

Data Cleansing Manager

UK Ministry of Defence


Sam Phoenix

Data Cleansing Manager

UK Ministry of Defence


The Cleansing Project (TCP) was set up with a finite life expectancy to clean Logistics data for the Defence Logistics Organisation – and then disband. But by working closely with the supply chain business units, TCP were able to change business processes and system controls to reduce data corruption, and were able to demonstrate, through metrics and real-world examples, that they had played a central role in reducing waste and inefficiency within the Supply Chain. Over two years the team became the central focus for information quality within the UK Ministry of Defence, and by challenging the organisational culture of the Defence Logistics Organisation and by spreading awareness of Data Quality the team secured the funding and senior management endorsement to change the team from a finite-lived project into a permanent Centre of Excellence in Data Quality.


Business Rule Engines: Build or Buy?


Roland Berg

Principal Consultant

ThinkSpark


Several vendors have entered the business rule product space, all promising to deliver the management and implementation of business rules for our applications. This presentation looked at the approaches of some of the tool vendors and explore some of the issues to consider when making the build or buy decision. Strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches to the business rule problem were addressed.


Meta-data for Hub-Based Enterprise Application Integration


Jim Fulton

Associate Technical Fellow

The Boeing Company


Enterprise Application Integration for large enterprises rapidly becomes too complex for point-to-point interfaces. The alternative is a hub-and-spoke architecture with hub mediating the flow of data among applications. With this strategy, a number of integrations technologies gravitate toward the hub: integration brokers, message brokers, data warehouses, web services, security managers. Managing the assembly, deployment and evolution of hub technology, as well as that of the constantly changing set of spokes, requires not just significant quantities of meta-data, but a meta-data architecture adequate to the needs of many people, with many perspectives, many goals, many tools, many asynchronous tasks.


Service-Oriented Architectures:

Applying Data Modeling Disciplines and Techniques to the New World of Web Services, XML and Semantics


Fran Clark

President

Arpeggio Technology, LLC


XML is becoming firmly entrenched as the standard for “data in motion” among e-business applications and in service-oriented architectures. As a result, important data is now moving across physical networks and across semantic boundaries instead of inside traditional data repositories. Creates new challenges, including intensive new requirements for visibility and understanding of data at both the technical and business levels. By leveraging XML meta data and other technologies, it is possible to create dynamic, extensible semantic models that vastly improve data effectiveness and manageability across XML service networks. This session discussed:

  • How to apply both new and established data-modeling disciplines to the “naturally disordered” world of XML service-oriented architectures

  • The role of semantics in modeling data in motion

  • How new technologies, e.g., RDF, enable creation of semantic models

  • The role of relational databases in the management of data in motion



Evaluating DBMS Platforms for a Next Generation Data Warehouse


Michael K. Miller
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