As it turns out, there are a lot of applications of the Data Vault architecture which I've built over the past 15 years. As testimony to the efforts, there are a few companies who've built concepts, and data models on the Data Vault architectures, then proceeded to patent the data models and the processes around the data models in order to provide competitive edge. I think the Data Vault architecture has finally grown up. If investment bankers can see the value of the Data Vault architecture and are willing to fund a patent effort on the models built based on the standards, then there must be a correlation between the standards in the architecture and the understanding of business users.
I've recently been involved with many different efforts in building Data Vault (Common Foundational Integrated Data Models) architectures. Nearly every one of these efforts are resulting in the CIO and investment bankers putting the money forward to patent the underlying architecture, along with the methods to get the data in and out of the data models. It seems to show a growing trend: that the Data Vault architecture is achieving it's design goals - providing value to the business, and being a model for the business to utilize. In other words, the architecture is designed in such a way as to be repeatable, flexible, scalable, and auditable - paving the way for incredible business flexibility. In other words: when the business changes, the model changes, on the fly with little to no impact to the business.
The Data Vault is an open, public, and freely available data modeling architecture. If you're stuck between a rock and hard place, or your Star Schemas are "beginning to fall apart" because of volume, or real-time, then the Data Vault might be a fit for you.
The Data Vault modeling architecture is a hybrid architecture consisting of the best of breed data modeling techniques used in both 3rd normal form, and Star Schema - except it is a foundationally based architecture with standards, which if adhered to can stear your enterprise common data model in the right direction. Below are a few links which discuss the nature of the Data Vault, and describe from a business perspective the value that it brings:
CIO in India
US Military, pitched by Oracle Executive (Follow the quotes made about the model and assimilation techniques), very powerful!
Kent Graziano discusses Data Vault and Agile Modeling Techniques
Dr. Claudia Imhoff is quoted in CRM at the Speed of Light...
Information Technology Series Book on applying the Data Vault
Article on SAP and pDM using the Data Vault
There are other documents detailing the use and application of the Data Vault, however I won't go into those here. The point of this entry is to say that by utilizing the Data Vault architecture to design your common data model (be it for services, or operational needs, or for Data Warehousing), you can in effect - generate intellectual property, and additional value for your firm - along with a consistent, standard, and repeatable approach that can be built out by an automated tool.
The thing that strikes me is the number of resulting data models (built on Data Vault principles) that are being patented as company owned IP.
Do you have thoughts on patenting internal data models? Will it help or hurt the cause of invention and moving forward? Do you see a need to model your data after your business?
As always, Thank-you very much,
Get your Masters of Science in Business Intelligence, http://www.COBICC.org
Posted March 27, 2007 8:09 AM
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