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Sunday, November 27, 2005

A Modeling Profession

Look for this column (blog?) to start up in early 2006. This first installment is for setup and testing purposes, although it is hopefully still worth reading.

I'm a bit old to begin a career in modeling, although I still have nice legs. Enough of that. I am interested in all aspects of software development, but have recently been studying modeling, particularly data modeling. While research is never-ending, I'm ready to start the writing side of this effort, beginning with this "tincat musings" column.

There. I called it a column. I can't bring myself to call it a "blog" just yet as that would make me a blogger. I don't know that it is fair to call it a column, because no one has hired me as a columnist, I simply took it upon myself. If it looks like a blog and it reads like a blog...

I will be writing text that will flow into rows in this column. The column will hold data of a type we could call "Document." Of course, we could declare that any character-based column holds data of type Document, where we define this type to include strings of unicode characters (or ascii, for those over 30). Other columns could then be of type "Mime" perhaps. That's it - that's all I need for my "database" - those two types.

So I've moved from the vocabulary of working with character and binary files in the 70's to databases with Document and Mime types today. Some of you might be suggesting that a Document could include Dime/Mime types, but that's an implementation technique. Documents, as far as I'm concerned, are entities that could be implemented using paper and pen (as the implementation for those blessed with eyesight - it could be implemented otherwise for those not). With my definition, if it looks like a document and reads like a document...

Now that I know that everything I want to model will be either of type Document (or a subtype) or of type Mime (ditto), I'm ready for the runway. After I get a few more of these columns under my belt (a fine silk sash from Paris), I'll be ready for takeoff. Speaking of mixed metaphors, what is a model anyway?

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At 10:19 AM, January 20, 2006 , Anonymous Johnnie said...

Just stumbled across this, and as an "initial posting" it reveals a great deal about you! It seems you are a bright and articulate punster, with nice gams and an unfortunate affinity for cats...

Some phrasing in the middle of this also caught my eye - "...rows in this column...". May I deduce that you are writing using the RM to support arguments for NF2? (;-D

And will you be wearing that silk scarf along with your school t-shirt when we dance the Twist again in March?

At 11:30 AM, January 20, 2006 , Blogger --dawn said...

Thanks for giving away your identity in that last line, johnnie.

This was my trial run blog and perhaps I should delete it, but thought it still worthwhile. To correct or answer on a few counts

1) I'm a dog person, allergic to cats, but tolerate my daughter's cat as long as I remember to take a Claritin-D in advance. The name TINCAT comes from The INformation CATalog, being a fan of metadata presented for humans.

2) My legs are not really that great--not exactly slim these days, but I must have been feeling more secure when I wrote that.

3) You might have been joking, but I'm guessing blogger has a SQL database backing it. If non-1NF blogging software with an Atom or RSS feed that works with my current ISP comes out, I'll take a look.

4) And, yes, I am speaking at the Datatel Users' Group conference in March and when they take a break from that new-fangled kids-these-days music, I expect to find a hippie IS-manager-type person with whom to do the twist.

Cheers! --dawn


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