Very cool to see that Microsoft IT CTO Barry Briggs values data modeling
Data modeling is integral to the success of Microsoft, making sure that the company has a good picture of customer activity and needs across business units. One challenge in keeping good data on customers -- data degrades, Briggs said. People get married and change their names, companies move and they get acquired. Briggs quoted the Greek philosopher Heraclitus: "You cannot step in the same river twice."
But one member of the audience, who described himself as "Cranky Guy," was startled by Briggs's description of data modeling being at the core of Microsoft's business. "My CIO would slap me in the head if I said that," Cranky Guy said. What about channel relationships, sales, or talking to customers?
Briggs said that those things, and more, are important -- but data modeling is at the foundation of those things, because companies need a thorough understanding of their customers to accomplish those things.