DAMA International - Calgary Chapter

DAMA Calgary - January Meeting - Data Quality for the "Internet of Things"

January 21st, 2021 at Noon MT

Title: Data Quality for the Internet of Things

Abstract:  The quality of any business or industrial process outcomes depend upon three major foundations:

  • Quality and reliability of hardware (and physical network) supporting it.
  • Quality of design of the process and decision rules.  This includes anticipating all contingencies which would influence a decision made independent of human judgment and involvement.  
  • Quality of the data at capture, and quality of definition and clarity of data conveyed between devices.In communication between devices, the obvious shortcomings and ambiguities of natural language syntax argue for more structured messages (containing well-defined data fields) for communication between devices, and between devices and people. 


The dilemma is this:  for each pair of devices (or sometimes more than just two), who determines the standard of data communication?   If a kind of device (like a microwave oven) is supplied by multiple manufacturers, does each have its own design of transaction and the subordinate message structure?   If so, what if you have two kinds of microwave ovens in your home?  

Each digital message between devices exists in the context of a transaction (conforming to a standard transaction type) which in turn exists in the context of a relationship.  The action (or purpose) of a transaction (e.g. start the car engine on a cold morning) may be contingent upon a variety of environmental factors (each observed by some kind of automated sensor).  The integration of all that data into a decision can be complex. 

How is this all resolved?  The answer lies, in part, in a wider understanding of the nature of data, data architecture, and data communication standards, as well as applying the principles of data architecture and metadata to the design of the interactions. 

Speaker Bio:

Michael Scofield, M.B.A. is an Assistant Clinical Professor at Loma Linda University.  He is a frequent speaker and author in topics of data management, data quality, data visualization, and data warehousing.  He has spoken in over 27 states, Canada, Australia, and the U.K.  Audiences have included 24 DAMA chapters, 5 TDWI chapters,  14 ASQ sections and many accounting professional organizations.  He also does guest lectures at several universities. 

His career experience includes some time with a CPA firm, developing an accounting and general ledger system for a major California bank, as well as experience in government, manufacturing, finance, and software development.  Now semi-retired, he still does pro bono data mining and data quality analysis for non-profit organizations.   His greatest interest currently is data visualization, data quality assessment, and using graphic techniques to reveal business and economic behavior.   He also has humor published in the Los Angeles Times, and other journals.

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