Data discovery is enabled by data that is understandable, trusted, and visible.
Data exchange is facilitated by data that is accessible and interoperable.
Together, data discovery and exchange are the necessary ingredients for information sharing.Why is it so hard?
Primarily it’s a coordination issue. We need to coordinate not only internally in our own organization (often already large and complex), but also externally, between organizations — horizontally and vertically. It’s quite a challenge to get everyone describing data (metadata) and cataloging data in the same way. Each of us, each office, each division, and so forth has its own standards and way of communicating. What is the saying, “you say poTAYtos, and I say poTAHtos”.
Can we ever get everyone talking the same language? And even if we could, do we really want to limit the diversity and creativity by which we express ourselves? One way to state a social security number is helpful for interoperability, but is there really only one “right” way to say it? How do we create data interoperability without creating only one right way and many wrong ways to express ourselves?
Perhaps, the future will bring artificial intelligence closer to being able to interpret many different ways of communicating and making them interoperable. Sort of like the universal translator on Star Trek.