Database Programming: What is database?
In simple terms, a database is a collection of data (related data, same type of data) that show some aspect of real world. To perform a certain task, a database system is developed and populated.
Database Programming: What is Database Management System (DBMS)?
It is a collection of programs that manipulate database. It is software used for storing and retrieving data. It ensures proper security measures for user’s data.
DBMS provides an interface between software application and data. Users can create their own database, according to their requirements, using this software.
From an application, DBMS accepts request for data and then instructs the operating system to provide that specific data. Users and other third-party software can also store and retrieve data using database management system, in large systems.
Database Programming: Why is it important to learn DBMS?
To overcome the deficiencies of traditional file management system, database management system was introduced. DBMS supports real-world entities. It also uses attributes and behaviors: e.g. a college database may use “student” as an entity and its age as an attribute.
DBMS supports relationships among entities. User can understand the whole database design just by looking at table names.
To remove redundancy from relation (also called table), normalization rules are implemented. To ease its process, DBMS stores metadata: data about data.
Unlike file-processing systems, DBMS provides greater consistency. For efficient data manipulation, query languages are used. Additionally, it allows multiple views for different users.
10 popular DBMS software
Following is a list of DBMS software that can be used to design databases:
- SQ lite
- Microsoft access
- LibreOffice Base
- Microsoft SQL server
Most popular database language is SQL
SQL (Structured Query Language) skills are necessary, if you are looking to start your career as database developer, database analyst or database administrator.
What is SQL? It is a standard programming language that is used to create, design and manage relational databases. There are four types of DBMS systems among which relational database is one.
These four types include: Network database, Hierarchal database, relational database and Object-Oriented database.
What is relational database? It is made up of a group of tables containing rows and columns. Each column in table shows a category of data such as student name, age or address. Each row contains a value against the column name such as Ali, 23 or Norway respectively.
Other language used for database programming include:
- HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language)
- PERL (Practical Extraction and Report Language)
- XML (Extensible Markup Language)
MySQL: It is a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) that runs as server and have up to 11 million installations. It provides multi-user access to a no. of databases. MySQL is open source software that uses subset of SQL and ANSI (American National Standard Institute).
PERL: It is the popular server-side scripting language. It was developed by Larry Wall, specially designed for text processing.
How user interacts with a database?
Users can create and edit files using database programs easily. Following is the list of tasks that users can perform with database:
- Create data entry forms
- Create a table and set index
- Edit / update a table
- View query
- Modify structure
Create data entry forms: To display each record, a form is designed to enter data. Field validation is implemented on data entry forms that determine which data can go in database and which not.
Create a table and set index: In a table, each field has three characteristics: name, length and type. On fields, indexes are created. Whenever records are added or deleted, the index is updated.
Edit / update a table: To update table using DBMS, simply open the table and click Edit option.
View Query: Records are selected using SQL command called query. These records can be sorted using query and desired view is created.
Modify structure: According to requirements, fields are added and deleted from databases time to time. Their names and lengths can also be updated as per need.
Reporting: As compared to queries, reports provide more elaborative summaries. Reports consist of page and column headers and fields can be sorted as required.
Advantages of Database Management System (DBMS)
To store and retrieve data, a variety of techniques is offered by DBMS.
To balance the needs of many applications that share same data, DBMS acts as an efficient handler.
It offers high security and data integrity.
Application development time is reduced using database management system.
Limitations of Database Management System (DBMS)
DBMS is often complex, that’s why users’ training is required.
High cost of DBMS software and hardware may increase the budget of organization.
Database Management System is not recommended if your organization does not have the budget or expertise to operate the DBMS. In such cases, go with Excel files or CSVs.
Types of user that can access the database management system are: Database administrators, Application programmers and End-users.
It is widely used in Airlines, Tele-communication, Finance, Banking and other industries.
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