Mashup Quality: It's all about the Data
JohnFeller 110000RUW6 Tags:  mashuphub widgets ibm mashups web2.0 databases 2 Comments 5,000 Views
There's been some recent articles about how to create mashups that I've have found interesting. For instance, David Storm wrote an article about the seven steps toward creating your first enterprise mashup. Of the steps he listed, Step #2 "Pick your data sources", I feel is the most important. Actually, it's really a matter of finding and determining whether you can actually access various data sources in the format you need them in. Within an enterprise, data is stored in a variety of locations and in different formats. A lot of data is not even accessible by other users. In many cases, data is not even under the control of a corporate IT shop. For example, some mission critical data resides on individual's computer hard drives. Think of all the spreadsheets that are being used. When people need to share this data, they usually just send them to each other via email. In this case, people have to figure out who has the most recent copy and then the email them around and the cycle continues over and over again.
IBM's Mashup Center , a product which has been recently announced, addresses some of these concerns. The InfoSphere MashupHub component of this product provides a catalog as well as a way to retrieve data from departmental, personal, and enterprise information. For example, data can be uploaded from a spreadsheet and then be transformed into a feed that can be used within a Mashup Application. This data can be easily found by searching the catalog and by subscribing to the feed, business users can retrieve the most recent data. Social networking and community ratings help users find "quality" data sources rather because other people can provide comments and point to other mashup examples that use the data sources. The enterprise IT shop can also regulate who gets control of the data feed and start to provide a culture that people don't always store mission critical data on their personal hard drive. Data from various sources such as DB2, IMS, LDAP, pureXML, SAP, Web Services, Excel, RSS feeds, Access, and Domino can be retrieved, manipulated into various formats the users needs, and then cataloged for other people to use and share.
You'll be hearing more about the IBM Mashup Center with a series of future articles on the IBM developerWorks site. Stay tuned...
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