A seasonal perspective on a single version of the truth


Yesterday was one of the two times a year that an equinox occurs. From its Latin roots, the term equinox translates as equal night since, on the day of an equinox, daytime and night are of approximately equal duration. This occurs because during an equinox the Sun is aligned with the center of the Earth.

An equinox also marks the changing of the seasons. What seasons, however, depends on your perspective. If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, yesterday marked the end of summer and the beginning of autumn, making it the autumnal equinox from your perspective. Whereas, if you live in the Southern Hemisphere, yesterday marked the end of winter and the beginning of spring, making it the vernal equinox from your perspective.

So depending on what side of the planet you live on, autumn either starts in September or March. Or if you live somewhere along the Equator, such as Indonesia, then autumn never starts—because the seasons never change.

My equinoctial point is the different perspectives about the equinox sheds an equal amount of light and dark on a key concept of MDM that has always tied me in unequal knots—a single version of the truth. While I understand the value of creating the best representations of master data entities (parties, products, locations, assets), this is but one of various, and business-justifiable, versions of verisimilitude applicable to an organization, especially depending on where in the organization you work.

This doesn’t mean that your enterprise shouldn’t enjoy the view from the Equator. In other words, create a single view of master data entities. There are many business needs for it. Just remember there are business needs for other points of view too. And just like the seasons north and south of the Equator, those business needs change.


About Author

Jim Harris

Blogger-in-Chief at Obsessive-Compulsive Data Quality (OCDQ)

Jim Harris is a recognized data quality thought leader with 25 years of enterprise data management industry experience. Jim is an independent consultant, speaker, and freelance writer. Jim is the Blogger-in-Chief at Obsessive-Compulsive Data Quality, an independent blog offering a vendor-neutral perspective on data quality and its related disciplines, including data governance, master data management, and business intelligence.

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