Database Management Basics

Database management is the process for managing information that supports the organization’s business processes. It involves storing and distributing data it to applications and users, editing it as needed, monitoring data changes, and making sure that data integrity is not compromised due to unexpected failure. It is an element of a company’s total informational infrastructure which aids in decision making, corporate growth and compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

In the 1960s, Charles Bachman and IBM among others developed the first database systems. They developed into information management systems (IMS) that enabled the storage and retrieve large amounts data for a broad range of applications, from the calculation of inventory to supporting complex financial accounting and human resources functions.

A database is a set of tables that organize data according to a particular schema, such as one-to many relationships. It utilizes primary keys to identify records and permit cross-references between tables. Each table has a set of fields, known as attributes, which provide information about the entities that comprise the data. The most well-known type of database that is currently in use is a relational model developed by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. This design is based on normalizing data to make it simpler to use. It is also simpler to update data because it does not require changing several databases.

Most DBMSs support multiple types of databases by offering different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level focuses on costs, scalability, and other operational issues such as the layout of the database’s physical storage. The external level is the representation of the database in user interfaces and applications. It can include a mixture of different external views based on different models of data and may include virtual table that are calculated using generic data to improve the performance.

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