Another important design best practice that should be established early in the development process is establishing naming conventions for your cubes. In fact, it is highly recommended that you introduce your entire project user community – Architects, Modelers, Contributors, Analysts and Consumers – to all of your naming conventions, as part of a “kick-off” of any project.
Since there may be some differences in the meanings of certain terminologies across an organizations legacy systems or business units, you may want to consider actually developing a brand-new vocabulary and definitions for the solution being developed. Brand new terms won’t carry the “baggage” of legacy systems, processes and people, but remember– you will need a few “semantic anchors” to bridge the gap between old application terminology and the new system.
Consistency is also vitally important! To maintain a “global view” of things it is important to appoint an objective team “naming czar” to mediate any conflicts or to cast a “deciding vote” if required.
Here are some “general concepts” you should use when thinking about any cube name:
- Choose cube names (and naming conventions) carefully; since it is increasingly difficult to rename a cube after some development has occurred and especially after deployment.
- Effective and consistent cube naming is vital for application usability and maintainability.
- Keep your cube names short and concise.
- Use all lowercase with underscores as appropriate to improve readability
A common cube naming practice is to assign each cube a prefix that indicates the purpose of the cube. Prefixes in cube names will:
- Adds to the “clarity” of the application architecture
- Improves maintainability of the application
- Helps in applying and maintaining security
The best practice prefix suggestions are:
Once again, the sooner you start using a naming convention the sooner it will become part of every development effort. Better still all of your applications will have a consistent, professional, “look and feel”.
“Don’t stop here, I lost my place, I’m close behind” – Howie Day