What the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) is NOT.
NIEM is many things. But, for all the ground it covers, there are many things that the NIEM is not. Here are a few comments about the role of NIEM:
NIEM is not a database technology.
NIEM is not a guideline for designing your internal databases. NIEM is only for exchanges between systems. You should not try to make your internal databases mirror the NIEM.
NIEM is not just XML.
NIEM is not just XML. It's a set of reusable objects and their definitions. The definitions are not an afterthought. They are a major feature and benefit of the model.
NIEM is not a programming language.
NIEM is a data model. It's not a programming language. It's represented as XML, which isn't a programming language either.
NIEM is not a silver bullet.
NIEM is a tool for creating exchanges. The model defines pieces and how they fit together. You can use those pieces to build exchanges. But you still need to do the building.
NIEM is not a replacement for exchanges and interagency agreements.
Again, the model is a set of objects. Which objects are used and precisely how they will fit together are questions that will still need to be negotiated and decided between and among exchange partners.
NIEM is not a definition of interoperability.
NIEM helps define the payload of an exchange. Topics like security and messaging layers are beyond the scope of the model.