Today I will like to invent a new word.
The word ”Meterencedata” is a combination of the two terms:
- Metadata and
- Reference Data
Reference Data are high level value lists that categorize the data. Roughly spoken; in relation to databases and spreadsheets reference data explains what is in the rows.
Data Management activities – like Data Quality improvement, Master Data Management and Data Migration – will be (and have I seen are) like working in the dark if you don’t know the Metadata – and the Reference Data.
Data Models may look different. Some information may be understood through metadata in a model but through reference data in another model.
- In one data model there are three columns in a customer table with corresponding describing metadata for:
- Fixed line telephone number
- Cell phone number
- Fax number
- In another data model there are a phone type reference table explaining the values in a separate phone table under (as a child to) the customer table having the columns:
- Phone type
- Phone number
In the latter case the original phone types may have been the classic fixed line, cell and fax but the entries may have been extended over time as the real world changes. This model also reflects the reality of several same type numbers attached to a single party.
Conclusion: One man’s Metadata is another man’s Reference Data as you don’t meet and mete out the data equal ways.