Business Tech: User Ownership of Data

People Who Live in Glass Houses Shouldn't

In the beginning, data belonged to the hierarchy of priests who dwelt in the rooms of glass, where cleanliness was more important than godliness. And the priests spoke unto the people, and they said, the data is ours and you shall not partake of it without a proper help desk ticket. You shall not partake of it until our schedule allows. Our claim is greater than yours. You do the mundane work of generating revenue, but we spend our days in the contemplation of the code.

And the people were demoted from co-workers to mere users. And the priests looked down upon them and thought ill of their priorities. It was a time of great darkness and, eventually, the very fabric of computing was rended and remade until the priesthood fell from grace.

A Byte in The Hand

Computers moved out of the clean rooms. They were forced to move out. Frustrated users brought PCs and other tools into the workplace to allow them to directly manipulate their data, their way, on their schedule. The spreadsheet became a weapon in the war to get around the priests of IT. Even those shops where the glass houses still exist have seen the sea change. Workers want to get work done, and if IT is perceived as a bottleneck, there are ways around them. Remember, bottlenecks create frustration and frustration can turn to anger.

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Charles Barouch is the CTO of HDWP, Inc. He is also a regular contributor to International Spectrum Magazine, a former Associate Editor for both Database Trends and for Gateways Magazine, a former distance learning Instructor for CALC. He is presently the Past President of the U2UG. Mr. Barouch has presented technology and business topics in front of hundreds of companies, in a wide range of product and service categories. He is available for on-site speaking and consulting engagements in and out of the United States.

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Mar/Apr 2011