Alation launched one of the first data catalogs in 2015 and since then there has been rapid innovation in the space. Data privacy and other regulations spawned data privacy and security innovations using auto-classification and tagging.
For the past four years, vendors have introduced numerous features designed to assist data stewards and owners apply data governance policies, standards, and workflows. The business glossary was the first of many data governance features that have been incorporated into data catalogs.
More recently, vendors have provided users access to actual data, not just metadata, via direct query or data virtualization engines. Data lineage helps users understand the origins of data and shows developers the impact of changes on downstream systems.
Today, vendors are incorporated artificial intelligence to automate many facets of data governance. The term “active metadata” is now common parlance. Metadata now triggers alerts, actions, and workflows to improve data governance operations.
Finally, Wayne Eckerson thinks that data catalogs will soon spawn data marketplaces to help organizations automate the provisioning and consumption of data products.
“Wayne Eckerson believes data catalogs will soon spawn data marketplaces to automate the provisioning and consumption of data products.”