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Data is The New Racket

So… after months of staring at various blank pages, thinking about some magnum opus on data management and data virtualization, I get tired of stalling, and begin.

Specifically, I’ll begin with a definition, lifted from OxfordDictionaries.com:

racket2

,,,2 (informal) An illegal or dishonest scheme for obtaining money. let’s not dwell too much on this one 😉

   2.1 A person’s line of business or way of life.

   Example Sentences:
  • ‘I’m in the insurance racket’
  • ‘You had better have a darn good reason for any involvement in the casualty insurance racket.’
  • ‘It’s a strange business, this journalism racket.’
  • ‘Initial conversation gives you the impression that this kid’s just too nice to make it in the music business, this racket will chew him up and spit him out.

So… the Data Racket, then, is the world of doing things with data, one way or another, as a business or a way of life.  And, consistent with the ongoing datafication of everything, even the example sentences hold up pretty well if you add “data” to them:

  • ‘I’m in the insurance data racket’
  • ‘You had better have a darn good reason for any involvement in the casualty insurance data racket.’
  • ‘It’s a strange business, this data journalism racket.’
  • ‘Initial conversation gives you the impression that this kid’s just too nice to make it in the digital music business, this racket will ingest him and spit him out.’

I kind of stumbled into the data racket myself, about ten years ago, thanks to a series of lucky breaks that got me into product management (which was a longtime goal) in the domain of integration and data management (which just kind of happened). Classical data warehousing, ETL and data quality on Oracle were the beginning, but then someone stampeded a herd of yellow elephants through Kimball’s cathedral, and there came a bunch of NoSQL data stores, and clouds rolled in, and… one thing led to another. And now I’ve been places, seen things, and learned, I hope, more than a few useful lessons along the way. If they help me make sense of everyrthing happening with Big Data, I will let you know

This blog will blend lessons distilled from across the years with my take on what’s coming next, and, perhaps, guest posts from gracious people I’ve met along the way. My hope is that some of it will be worth a read, and even occasionally novel.

And now, as they say, “allons-y.”

 

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