Database Management Basics

Database management is a method of managing the information that supports a company’s business operations. It involves storing data and distribution to users and applications and modifying it as needed and monitoring changes to the data and preventing it from being corrupted due to unexpected failure. It is an element of a company’s informational infrastructure which aids in decision making and corporate growth, as well as compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

In the 1960s, Charles Bachman and IBM among others came up with the first database systems. They developed into information management systems (IMS) which allowed huge amounts of data to be stored and retrieved for a variety of purposes. From calculating inventory to supporting complicated financial accounting functions, and human resource functions.

A database is a collection of tables that organizes data in accordance with an established pattern, such as one-to-many relationships. It uses the primary key to identify records, and also allows cross-references between tables. Each table has a set of fields, known as attributes, that provide information about the data entities. 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 model is based upon normalizing the data, making it more easy to use. It is also easier to update data because it does not require changing various databases.

Most DBMSs can support multiple types of databases, offering internal and external levels of organization. The internal level deals with cost, scalability and other operational concerns like the layout of the physical storage. The external level is the representation of the database on user interfaces and applications. It could comprise a mix of various external views based on different data models and can include virtual tables that are calculated using generic data in order to improve the performance.

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