data dictionary

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data dictionary

[′dad·ə ‚dik·shə‚ner·ē]
(computer science)
A catalog which contains the names and structures of all data types.

data dictionary

A data structure that stores meta-data, i.e. data about data. The term "data dictionary" has several uses.

Most generally it is a set of data descriptions that can be shared by several applications.

Usually it means a table in a database that stores the names, field types, length, and other characteristics of the fields in the database tables.

An active data dictionary is automatically updated as changes occur in the database. A passive data dictionary must be manually updated.

In a DBMS, this functionality is performed by the system catalog. The data dictionary is a more general software utility used by designers, users, and administrators for information resource management.

The data dictionary may maintain information on system hardware, software, documentation, users, and other aspects.

Data dictionaries are also used to document the database design process itself and can accumulate meta-data ready to feed into the system catalog.

data dictionary

A database about data and databases. It holds the name, type, range of values, source, and authorization for access for each data element in the organization's files and databases. It also indicates which application programs use that data so that when a change in a data structure is contemplated, a list of affected programs can be generated.

The data dictionary may be a stand-alone system or an integral part of the DBMS. Data integrity and accuracy is better ensured in the latter case.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Core Elements Subgroup took responsibility for drafting the "core" preservation metadata elements and supporting data dictionary.
The items from the left side of the data dictionary are listed in the left column of the spreadsheet, and the corresponding amounts from the financial statements are placed in the columns to the right.
The 3M Healthcare Data Dictionary provides a road map to the content and structure of patient data by defining and translating every data element and healthcare concept that occurs in a computerized patient record.
Consequently, the 3M Healthcare Data Dictionary strengthens the core features of BI-Clinical, including clinical and administrative decision support based on individual patients or population, outcomes research (data warehousing, population queries, etc.
The combined power of the two applications makes it possible to create and store customized ICD-9 and ICD-10 mappings, and leverages the industry-standard vocabularies of the 3M Healthcare Data Dictionary to provide coded, computable data that people can understand and software applications can use and process in real-time.
Data Dictionary Driven - Allows developers to provide a simplified view of complex data that is clear and easy for any user to understand
unit responsible for managing and maintaining the global MedDRA data dictionary, today announced an alliance with Global eHealth Solutions (GeHS) to deliver MedDRA training and education through a variety of e-learning technologies.
Each data feed comes with a detailed data dictionary and ongoing technical and setup support.
AMEX: QWAN) today announced PACE for Open Systems, a powerful client/server application development environment with integrated data dictionary that is available now for the IBM AIX operating system on the Wang RISC Series and IBM RISC System computers.
Nasdaq: QVDX), a global software and vertical solution company, today announced it has entered into an agreement with 3M Health Information Systems to achieve greater clinical interoperability in hospitals by integrating components of the 3M Healthcare Data Dictionary as an added feature of Quovadx's Cloverleaf[R] Integration Services.
The development environment includes a dynamic data dictionary that extends data definition well beyond the database schema by including editing, verification, and formatting rules for data fields, as well as storing all application building blocks such as forms, menus, and security information.