Data Lifecycle VS Data Application Lifecycle

Many lifecycle models for digital assets have been proposed according to specific disciplines needs or adherence to standards (Higgins 2008). More generally, the data lifecycle results a direct implication of the data application lifecycle, especially in fields where the Archive is not a natural/legal destination. As a connection for the sequences of operations on data, the information transmission is the key event articulating the data lifecycle, wether it happens between operators, tools or automatic processes.

As an implication of productive workflows, the data lifecycle might be correlated with the lifecycle of products and services too. Such as for example, in Engineering Design, the integrated management of production, selling and customer service, that is the Product Lifecycle Management, gathers together the results of the entire pertinent digital workflow as a support for all these processes until service completion (Werner Dankwort et al. 2004).

Similarly, in the case of Built Environment related digital products, the data lifecycle is determined in its extension and characteristics by the legal and professional responsibilities of authors for their services, but a direct correspondence between data and buildings lifecycle is unlikely to take place. Maybe, the closest example to the Engineering Design case is the production of prefabricated buildings since the product lifecycle is generally as short as the legal responsibility of professionals.

In effect, within the context of architectural practices, assuming an optimistic life expectation for buildings of one hundred years and a professional liability period for architects of about a decade, i.e. in UK architects liability expires after 12 years from building construction (Speaight and Stone 2005), the difference between professional liability period and building lifecycle can amount to up to nine decades – a time span largely exceeding the survival of most practices.

In the case of digital products concerning interventions on Built Heritage, one would expect data lifecycle to extend at least as long as the operative utility of the works or, as Digital Heritage, to coincide with the duration of the preservation period granted to Heritage. Actually, this is a patent case of data lifecycle ramification: professional content providers may see their responsibility exhausted when the public interest of data begins, that is when data enter the cycle of data application for the Built Heritage management.

Where the data producer is a public institution the data lifecycle presents a similar diversification depending on whether the data is used for public building and refurbishing campaigns, to support private commercial initiatives or for the management of the Built Environment. For example, GIS databases and national cartography appear to be both design tools for private professionals and management tools for the public bodies since gathering together building norms and master plans indications. Though, these general considerations do not exhaust the multiplicity of the Design workflows cases. Their study might be based on analytical observations of the procedures adopted in each stakeholders community and this is the rationale for this project to involve in the investigation professional partners.

On the other, the terminal workflows steps can be isolated to reduce the variables playing in the processes of data creation and modification. In doing so, the details of data applications can be studied to discuss their correspondent curatorial issues maintaining accuracy and consistency of the results despite the narrow perspective adopted.

In this research, and in this blog, terminal data applications will be investigated to complement both the analysis on the partners' data audits and the resulting remarks on curatorial needs and requirements. The first process that will undergo this analysis method will be the CNC fabrication of architectural elements.

  • Higgins, Sarah. 2008. “The DCC Curation Lifecycle.” The International Journal of Digital Curation 3 (1): 134–140.
  • Speaight, Anthony, and Gregory Stone. 2005. Architects Legal Handbook. The Law for Architects. Oxford, Cambridge, Mass: Architectural Press.
  • Werner Dankwort, C., Roland Weidlich, Birgit Guenther, and Joerg E. Blaurock. 2004. “Engineers’ CAx Education—it’s Not Only CAD.” Computer-Aided Design 36 (14) (December): 1439–1450. doi:10.1016/j.cad.2004.02.011.

POSTED BY Ruggero Lancia