Reference Architecture – Part 1 – CIFe

In a previous post I introduced Claudia Imhoff‘s Corporate Information Factory.  As I have been many conversations over the last little bit on this area I thought I would share three different views and then lastly a version I am working on.  I even enclose my crazy diagram again.Cife

Back in 2005 Jonathan Geiger also at Intelligent Solutions wrote a great article for DM Review overviewing their newly evolved versions of the Corporate Information Factory – the extended version.  Or if we still had vinyl records it might have been an LP.  In the article Jonathan does a great job of breaking down the CIFe.

So hop on the link to the article and you can get all the details and a better picture.  But let me take what I think I understand and play it back from my point of view.

With any Business Intelligence architecture you have data created on the front lines (source data) that needs to flow into a centralized area where it can be added with other pieces of information from the Enterprise and then ultimately leveraged for the business.  Jonathan talks about this in the following manner:

  • Data Integration and Delivery – The middle
    • Data Flow – capture data from the outside and bring it in as well as moving data from the warehouse to marts or out.  But now there are many different ways to move data and as we move to active data warehouses this becomes even more important.
      • Data Federation – EII (Ipedo and the likes) data doesn’t actually move
      • Data Consolidation – ETL or ELT the data is move usually in bulk from one place to the other,cleansed
      • Data Propogation – EAI / ESB / EMB – all uses of messaging architecture to move from batch to event, trigger or creation level movement.  This is usually paired with Data Consolidation to do the transform, load and cleanse.
    • Data Structures can be physical or logical, be elsewhere, part of the federated or enterprise data structures
  • Knowledge Management – The middle layer
    This is a layer that brings together Business Operations, Business Intelligence and Business Management through the leverage of enterprise platforms such as portals, collaboration, content management allowing for the sharing of these data elements.
  • Environment Management – The outer layer
    Describes how governance and stewardship along with things like centres of excellence, quality, application and metadata management.
    • Metadata – move from back end (technical) metadata to the addition of business and administrative metadata.

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