As far back as the simple record keeping systems of the ancient Phoenicians, Sumerians and Egyptians, data management has been a discipline focused on capturing, storing and accessing information deemed to be significant. The earliest requirements for a data management system were standardized language or symbols, storage media (at the time, clay tablets and papyrus) and specially educated individuals who could prepare answers to questions posed to them (reports) by accessing the recorded information.

Fast forward to more modern time and this model, distilled to its most basic functionality, remains conceptually intact to a surprising degree.

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