The traditional supply curve indicated the lowest price at which suppliers were willing to sell their product. As prices rose, the seller was willing to sell more of the product. The seller in the world of metadata is the producer of metadata information. Those individuals who work tirelessly to create assets and define the metadata information produce the value-add for metadata. Traditional supply curves put price on the vertical axis and quantity on the horizontal axis. Price doesn't make much sense in our world, where we provide products and services inside the organization. However, we can exchange the price component with a cost or value-add one. Does this pass the common-sense test? Let's see; the more value the metadata effort creates, the more producers are willing to turn over the responsibility of metadata management. In a world where business units have the choice of building distributed metadata management environments versus utilizing a centralized metadata management group, the value-add must be substantial.How you define the quantity of assets remains a debatable area. Does a logical model count as one asset or 250 entities and attributes? Assets can always be deconstructed into smaller reusable subcomponents. Some areas, such as traditional database metadata, can generate hundreds of thousands of elements while Web services may produce less than a hundred. That being said, a customer who only spends $100 in your store is still a customer, and an asset is an asset, regardless of the size or value. The key is to be consistent in your accounting methods.

Figure 1: Supply Function, Demand Function and the Equilibrium Point

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