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Quick Answer: Are Data Fabric and Data Mesh the Same or Different

If you have an interest in data and analytics, you’ll be familiar with the terms data fabric and data mesh. You’ll probably also be aware that the two concepts advance the distributed architecture that has gained acceptance as representing the future of data management. But what makes them different from one another? Are they just different terms for effectively the same thing? Given that Fraxses is closely associated with both concepts, we at Intenda have been following the debate around this with some interest. This month Gartner weighs in on the matter in Quick Answer: Are Data Fabric and Data Mesh the Same or Different?

Gartner acknowledges the similarities between the two concepts, but makes a key distinction between them: “A data fabric is a technology-enabled implementation capable of many outputs, only one of which is data products. A data mesh is a solution architecture for the specific goal of building business-focused data products.”

The paper lists several other points of difference. These include the fact that “a data fabric is the utilisation of multiple existing technologies in combination to enable a metadata-driven implementation and augmented orchestration design. A data mesh is a solution architecture that can guide design within a technology-agnostic framework.”

In the view of Gartner, the two concepts are not mutually exclusive: “The design principles of each can be used in complementary fashion. A data fabric can be built without following data mesh practices. A data mesh must utilise the discovery and analysis principles that are intrinsic to a data fabric to support the validation of data objects and products to present them as part of the design process.”

Read the complete report to discover more about the similarities and differences between the two concepts. 

Source: Gartner®, Quick Answer: Are Data Fabric and Data Mesh the Same or Different?, 1 November 2021, By Mark Beyer, Ehtisham Zaidi Et Al

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