Douglas MacArthur said it best – "There is no substitute for victory." A paraphrase of that famous line is one that can be used in our profession: There is no substitute for reality. All of the theory and all of the talk about data warehousing and the corporate information factory are good; however, periodically a good hard dose of reality confirms and/or denies what we consultants and theoreticians have been proposing. Reality has a way of teaching us when nothing else seems to get through.

Recently I had the opportunity to visit Verizon in Dallas, Texas. In one form or another, they have been working on data warehousing for a number of years. Through starts and stops, they have several data warehouse/DSS initiatives. Some of the initiatives are more mature than others, but all seem to be heading the right direction. Their efforts are bearing fruit quite nicely.

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