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About Michael Gorman

Michael, the President of Whitemarsh Information Systems Corporation, has been involved in database and DBMS for more than 40 years. Michael has been the Secretary of the ANSI Database Languages Committee for more than 30 years. This committee standardizes SQL. A full list of Whitemarsh's clients and products can be found on the website. Whitemarsh has developed a very comprehensive Metadata CASE/Repository tool, Metabase, that supports enterprise architectures, information systems planning, comprehensive data model creation and management, and interfaces with the finest code generator on the market, Clarion ( The Whitemarsh website makes available data management books, courses, workshops, methodologies, software, and metrics. Whitemarsh prices are very reasonable and are designed for the individual, the information technology organization and professional training organizations. Whitemarsh provides free use of its materials for universities/colleges. Please contact Whitemarsh for assistance in data modeling, data architecture, enterprise architecture, metadata management, and for on-site delivery of data management workshops, courses, and seminars. Our phone number is (301) 249-1142. Our email address is:

  • Richord1

    Excellent article. If data modelers and software programmers spent a bit of time understanding data and data models as outlined in the article we would have robust designs. Like the challenge architects face, transforming concepts from the minds of people into data requires more than technical knowledge. Our current techniques focus primarily on the technical aspects of the design of data, ignoring the human factors such as values and behaviors that impact the design and the outcomes.
    Mapping the human concepts of data to their technical representation using semantics is a critical technique. Data models reduce the ambiguity of data and in doing so impose an artificial representation on the data that reduces the fidelity of the data from a human perspective. Through the data model transformation process, concepts are transformed and in some cases eliminated. The concept of a person becomes a digital persona through data modeling transformation. What is important is to understand what is “lost in transformation”.

  • Juraj Pivovarov

    People, myself included, keep asking “what exactly do you mean by conceptual model? Logical model?” I like this article that it attempts to formalize what “things”, and at what detail, are present at each level. It’s nice to get an appropriate grammar for each level of abstraction.

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