Database Management Basics

Database management is a system of coordinating the information that supports a company’s business operations. It involves storing data, disseminating it to applications and users and editing it when needed and monitoring changes to data and protecting against data corruption due to unexpected failure. It is a part of the overall infrastructure of a business that supports decision making in corporate growth, as well as compliance with laws like the GDPR and 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 made it possible to store and retrieve huge amounts of information for a range of purposes, from calculating inventory to supporting complicated financial accounting and human resources functions.

A database is a collection of tables that store data in accordance with a specific pattern, such as one-to many relationships. It makes use of primary keys to identify records, and allow cross-references between tables. Each table has a set of fields, referred to as attributes, that contain information about the data entities. The most widely used type of database that is currently in use is a relational model, created by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. This model is based on normalizing data to make it easier to use. It is also simpler to update data because it does not require changing certain sections of the database.

Most DBMSs support different types of databases by offering different levels of external and internal organization. The internal level deals with cost, scalability, and other operational issues, like the physical layout of the database. The external level is the representation of the database in user interfaces and applications. It can include a mixture of different external views that are based on different data models and can include virtual tables that are calculated with generic data to enhance the performance.

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