We use cookies and other similar technologies (Cookies) to enhance your experience and to provide you with relevant content and ads. By using our website, you are agreeing to the use of Cookies. You can change your settings at any time. Cookie Policy.

In the film 'The Blues Brothers', Jake and Elwood go into a bar. "What kind of music do you usually have here?" asks Elwood. "Oh, we got both kinds," says the lady behind the bar, "We got Country and Western."



While this might be a quite limited perspective on music, information technologists have often been even more myopic. There are two kinds of information, apparently – structured and unstructured – and, we are told, each requires very different handling. The structured world has its own terminologies and constructs, as does the unstructured world, and never the twain have met; or if they have, it’s been an uncomfortable liaison, like divorcees forced together at a family gathering. It’s not just the technology vendors – DBAs care little for taxonomies, and content management types quite probably think "normalised database" is a contradiction in terms.

OK, I generalise - DBAs and others do look over the tops of their cubes from time to time – but the fact remains that there are two, discrete sides. Business people, those trying to actually use the information, would be right in wondering what all the fuss is about: surely information is information? From the IT perspective however, each technology has evolved over the years, with little attention to the other, and the result is a divergent set of tools requiring complex interfaces or third party products to bridge between them.

A coupe of weeks ago, Oracle announced it was buying Stellent. The fact it has taken until 2006 for this to happen (and the same can be said for IBM, with FileNet), is indication enough that even the largest companies have only just "got" that organisations need a single source of information, whatever its underlying structure. While this may not be Oracle's first foray into unstructured data management (indeed, I believe it is its seventh), it is the company's first recognition that a purpose-designed content management system may offer additional facilities, beyond what can be supported from within the RDBMS. The issue has been brought into stark relief with the rapidly growing importance of email: today a purchase order may exist as a Word attachment to an email, or it may be a set of fields filled on a database form, but this is a purely technological distinction. To the sales operative, there should not be a distinguishable difference.

-1-

1  2  

   Next Page

Explore Our Topics

  • EDITOR'S BRIEFING
  • Virtual Conferences
  • Webinars
  • Roundtables

BPM in Action

March 10, 2011

The sixth annual BPM in Action 2011 Virtual Conference will explore cutting-edge market developments in BPM and describe how to leverage them for improved business operation and performance. More

View All Virtual Conferences

Smart Case Management: Why It's So Smart.

Date:Nov 05, 2009
Time:12:00 PM ET- (17:00 GMT)

REGISTER TODAY!

Date:Oct 29, 2009
Time:15:00 PM ET- (19:00 GMT)

REGISTER TODAY!
View All Roundtables
  • Research Library
  • Podcasts
  • News

Joe McKendrick: Part II of II: Designing Evolve-ability into SOA and IT Systems

In part two of Joe McKendrick's recent podcast with Miko Matsumura, chief strategist for Software AG, they talk about how SOA and IT systems need to change and grow and adapt with the organization around it.

Listen Now

Phil Wainewright: Helping Brands Engage with Social Media

Phil Wainewright interviews David Vap, VP of products at RightNow Technologies, and finds out how sharing best practices can help businesses understand how best to engage with online communities.

Listen Now

Peter Schooff: Making Every IT Dollar Result in a Desired Business Outcome: Scott Hebner of IBM Rati

Scott Hebner, Vice President of Marketing and Strategy for IBM Rational, discusses a topic on the top of every company's mind today: getting the most from IT investments.

Listen Now

Jessica Ann Mola: Where Will BI Fit In? Lyndsay Wise Explains

In BI, this tough economy and the increasing role of Web 2.0 and MDM are certainly topics on people's minds today. WiseAnalytics' Lyndsay Wise addresses each of them in this informative podcast.

Listen Now

Dennis Byron: Talking with...Deepak Singh of BPM Provider Adeptia

Deepak Singh, President and CTO of Adeptia, joins ebizQ's Dennis Byron in a podcast that gets its hand around the trend of industry-specific BPM.

Listen Now
More Podcasts
  • Most Popular
  • Quick Guide
  • Most Discussed

Quick Guide: What is BPM?

Learn More

Quick Guide: What is Event Processing?

Smart event processing can help your company run smarter and faster. This comprehensive guide helps you research the basics of complex event processing (CEP) and learn how to get started on the right foot with your CEP project using EDA, RFID, SOA, SCADA and other relevant technologies. Learn More

Quick Guide: What is Enterprise 2.0?

A lot of people are talking about Enterprise 2.0 as being the business application of Web 2.0 technology. However, there's still some debate on exactly what this technology entails, how it applies to today's business models, and which components bring true value. Some use the term Enterprise 2.0 exclusively to describe the use of social networking technologies in the enterprise, while others use it to describe a web economy platform, or the technological framework behind such a platform. Still others say that Enterprise 2.0 is all of these things. Learn More