Re: A standard UML profile for data modeling. How close are we?

From: Roy Hann <specially_at_processed.almost.meat>
Date: Wed, 29 Jul 2009 10:10:21 -0500
Message-ID: <>

dana wrote:

> 1) Are there competing UML Data Modeling profiles (for relational
> databases) or is only one being considered?

I really couldn't give a stuff because I will bet a fancy dinner that it won't have been conceived or framed by anyone with the first inkling of a clue about relational databases. (They might have some slight notion of the quirks and foibles of various popular SQL DBMS products, but since a large fraction of even the regular users of such products badly misuse them, that counts for nil in my book.)

> 2) If there's only one being considered, how far away are we from it
> becoming an accepted standard?

Don't know, don't care.

> 3) How are UML modeling tool vendors handling this absence of a
> standard, accepted data modeling profile? Will vendors create
> transforms to the standard from whatever UML data modeling profile(s)
> they currently support?

If it means parting fools from their money, count on it.

> 4) What precisely *is* an RFP? Is the OMG simply in a mode where it
> is
> soliciting entire candidate UML data modeling profiles, or has it put
> out a draft of one profile and is asking for refinements / comments?
> Or does that come later--RFC? If it's the former, how many years might
> one expect a standard to selected, refined, and
> ratified--and does this matter a whit to practitioners who have work
> to get done?

Not now, not ever.

> 5) What can the community do to accelerate the process of getting a
> UML Data Modeling profile ratified? Does one have to be a prof or in
> the upper echelons of one's field, or can "ordinary" professionals
> contribute?

Ordinary "professionals" would do very well to learn more about the basics of relational databases theory just to do their day job better, before they start erecting wobbly great "standards" towers on quicksand.

> Of course there's the also question of an "impedance mismatch" between
> a data-centric ERD-based and an app-centric / "unified" / OOP UML-
> based approach to data modeling:

There is no impedance mismatch--a term like that makes it sound like a law of nature. It is merely a consequence of our devotion to low-level procedural programming and our taste for "OOP"--whatever that is. There was an excuse for it 20-25 years ago. I have no explanation for why we're still pursuing it now though.

Received on Wed Jul 29 2009 - 17:10:21 CEST

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