Logical Structure

Enterprise data is a large segment of an organization's stored data due to its makeup. The overwhelming majority of data stored in the enterprise database is textual, because of its descriptive nature. Images and links will also reside at this level. Aggregate data may also exist in the enterprise database as summaries that are rolled up from the application databases.

Referring to the model, in normal application databases, "Product.Name, Product.Model and Product.Image" would be stored in the "Inventory, Sales and Engineering" databases. Move these descriptive, textual data to the enterprise database where they will occur only once and be common across the enterprise. "Product.Price, Product.QuantityOnHand and product.QuantityBacOrdered" belong in the application database.

You win twice by creating the enterprise data layer. There is a large saving in the size of the physical storage space required, both in the prime data area and in the indices, and when there is only one location for the descriptive data, it may be managed, scrubbed and incrementally improved.

The enterprise and application data elements are organized for the presentation layer in the Application Program Interface (API). The location of the API is indicated by the arrowheads.