Database Management Basics

Database management is the process for managing data that supports the organization’s business processes. It involves storing data and distribution to users and applications, modifying it as necessary, monitoring changes in the data and preventing it from getting corrupted by unexpected failure. It is a component of the informational infrastructure of a business that assists in decision making in corporate growth, as well as compliance with laws such as the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

In the 1960s, Charles Bachman and IBM among others developed the first database systems. They evolved into the information management systems (IMS) which made it possible to store and retrieve large amounts of data for a wide range of purposes, ranging from calculating inventory to supporting complex financial accounting and human resources functions.

A database is a collection of tables which organize data according to a specific pattern, such as one-to many relationships. It makes use of primary keys to identify records and allows cross-references among tables. Each table has a collection of fields called attributes that contain information about data entities. Relational models, created by E. F. “TedCodd Codd in the 1970s at IBM, are the most used database type today. This model is based on normalizing the data, making it simpler to use. It also makes it simpler to update data without the necessity of changing several databases.

Most DBMSs are able to support different types of databases and offer different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level focuses on cost, scalability and other operational issues like the layout of the physical storage. The external level is the way the database appears in user interfaces and other applications. It can include a mixture of different external views that are based on different models of data and could include virtual tables that are computed using generic data to enhance the performance.

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