New database systems for future of MDM

Posted on January 9, 2013

Happy new year to everyone. I hope the actual economy environnement will convince more people to invest time for helping the product development initiatives by solving Product Lifecycle Management related pending issues. Today’s article is about my thought on why it is always so complicated to move from a PLM solution to another, why are we changing tons of things and settings to in fact change a software cost or an interface. On of the reason is that all these elements are strictly related and the elements in a PLM solution can’t be dissociate. You can’t just keep you data and change the interface. From my previous experiences of migration, I’ve realized that I was moving data from a system to another with transformations but the data would still mean the same thing it is just that the software would handle it differently. Then speaking of standards would there be a standard for data management in PLM and should this define a technology or at least should it drive database system editors to push for one?

Actual systems

Today we mainly use SQL databases with tables in databases. Two schemas are used. Either the schema with a constant number of table like “value”, “properties”, “table_name”,… which allows you to create any complexity of system with a constant number of table. Or you have the schema like the one used by Aras Innovator which has one table for each Itemtype. Th

New database solutions

These solutions may not be new but they are not used so far in PLM systems. The main difference that I see is that it is taken into account that a part and a relationship between two parts can’t be stored the same way. Plus, we are use to have very simple relationships parent-children with sometime one or two other type of relationship but what if tomorrow the objects behave much more on context and you need to define these with more flexibility.

  • One first alternativ would be to store everything in XML databases. Most of the standards are using XML to be described why shouldn’t we store them directly in XML. Here is a presentation of BaseX.

  • The second one much newer and with nice perspective is shown in the following video where it says how they care about relationships in a different way then usual and with a lot of inputs from the actual developments in the social web.

I didn’t want here to get to deep in the tech talk about databases. Just starting some more thought about what could be the next technology to use to help customers to have a real matching between the real world and their databases and then to have more chances to detach the interface and the data. What are your thoughts?

Yoann Maingon

Yoann Maingon is an Entrepreneur and a PLM enthousiast. He is our main blogger at Minerva as he has been publishing articles about General PLM concepts and Aras Innovator for more than three years.

More Posts

Download Aras Innovator