The Myths About Metadata

Thursday Jun 2nd 2005 by Staff

In business the devil is in the details. And that's where metadata comes in. But if it isn't done right, it might as well not be done at all, writes CIO Update columnists Mark Robinson and Vivek Anand of Greenbrier & Russel.

[From CIO Update]

By definition, metadata is selected or summary information about data, i.e. name, length, valid values, or description of a data element. Metadata is stored in a data dictionary and repository and insulates the data warehouse from changes in the schema of operational systems.

The adoption of metadata by business has been slower than expected. Intuitively, one would think mining and categorizing data about data would be a no-brainier, especially for organizations that rely on enterprise applications to run a business.

It doesn't help that the whole concept keeps getting re-categorized each time an organization defines a different type of metadata. The challenges in the proper definition have arisen because attempts to categorize and define metadata have so far been one-dimensional.

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