Database Management Basics

Database management is a method of managing information that is used to support a company’s business operations. It includes data storage, distributing it to applications and users and then modifying it if necessary and monitoring changes to the data and preventing it from getting corrupted by unexpected failure. It is an element of a company’s overall informational infrastructure that supports decision-making and growth for the business as well as compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

The first database systems were created in the 1960s by Charles Bachman, IBM and others. They developed into information management systems (IMS) which enabled the storage and retrieve large amounts of data for a variety of purposes, from calculating inventory to supporting complex human resources and financial accounting functions.

A database consists of tables that are organized according to some scheme, such as one-to-many relationships. It utilizes primary keys to identify records, and allow cross-references between tables. Each table has a set of fields called attributes which provide information about data entities. The most widely used type of database currently is a relational model created by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. The concept is based on normalizing data to make it simpler to use. It also makes it easier to update data without the need to update several databases.

Most DBMSs can support multiple types of databases through different levels of internal and external organization. The internal level deals with costs, scalability, and other operational issues including the layout of the physical storage. The external level is the representation of the database on user interfaces and applications. It can include a mixture of external views based on different data models. It also may include virtual table that are computed using generic data to enhance the performance.

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