Azure Data Catalog – Glossary

Microsoft in the News

Finally!  Microsoft has added the ability to convert PDF documents into editable Word documents. Assuming you are using MS Office 365, you can now open a PDF in Word the same way you would open a Word doc. You will get a message saying that it may take a little time to open (converting a lot of graphics takes time) and that the converted document may not be exactly as shown in the PDF – nothing new there.

The ability to convert to a Word document will depend on how the PDF was created.  If the PDF is an image – in other words it was scanned in, then it cannot be converted. On the other hand, if the PDF was created by saving a Google doc or Word doc as a PDF, then all the required information is there for conversion.

Life just got a little easier.

ADC – Glossary

As mentioned in my last post, the glossary allows an organization to document key business terms and their definitions to create a custom business vocabulary. This enables consistency in the data usage across the entire catalog. Once you have set up the terms they can be used in tagging.

The Glossary can be set up in a hierarchy of items to show classifications. There is no limit to the number of levels in a hierarchy, however it is strongly suggested to limit the levels to fewer than three to keep it easy to understand. It is also acceptable to have no hierarchies as well by simply leaving the parent term blank. Once you have added a few items you can review them in the main glossary page.

The left side of the glossary screen shows the terms you have added


Here we see that a checking account is a child item of the CIF. I use this example to show a few things. The Cif is an acronym for Customer Information File. However, it is almost never referred to as that in a bank; it is simply called a CIF. This is a good example of how an asset can then be tagged as a CIF without the entire name being needed. It also standardizes it as CIF, instead of having the numerous variations that people may come up with such as; cif, C.I.F etc. This is important when searching tags. Consistent tags make searches more consistent.

There is additional information about the terms displayed in a table. The column sizes of each can be adjusted to allow you to view as much or as little of each column as you prefer. Above this table is the filter for the glossary and a Results per page. As your glossary expands both of these will become very important in the management of your glossary.

The box to the left of each item can be checked to display the details of the item, which will be displayed in a panel on the right.


Note at the top of the screen under the main Data Catalog menu is the glossary menu

New term – allows you to create a new term

Add child – will add a child to an existing term automatically. This will bring up a new term window with the parent term filled in with the information of the term you were on when you choose add child.

Add admin – this allows you to add a glossary administrator.  Note that security groups need to be set up for this to work.

Edit term – will allow you to edit the current term you are viewing.

Delete – this will delete the current term. Note that if the term is a parent then all children must be deleted before you can delete the parent.

Toggle – this button expands and minimizes the detail view pane.

It is interesting to note that the glossary gives you not only information about the term but also how it is used and what it is related to by noting the relationships and assets associated to the term.

Next we will look at how these are used in tags.

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