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What are managed metadata columns in SharePoint 2010 Server? Do you use them to fetch data across sites? Your help is much appreciated. Thank you :)

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Managed Metadata is new to 2010. The first step is to assure that the Managed Metadata Service is created in Central Admin. Yiou than now can build out the managed metadata for your organization, dept. etc using term groups, term sets and terms. The nice thing about MMD is that you can build hierarchial relationships of metadata. For instance Sales build a hiearchy as suchs (Widget, class of widget, color of widget, size of widget etc) You than can use the managed metadata column to point to the term sets and/or terms you created for ease of adding metadata when you add items to sharepoint. You can also provide filtering and navigation based off the terms you create.

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