A collection of information, which can be organized, is called a database. It is organized so that it can be easily managed, accessed and updated. Databases can be classified according to its contents such as numeric, bibliographic, images and full-text. Relational database is a tabular database where data are defied and organized so that it can be accessed in a number of different ways. In different points in a network, a distributed database can be replicated or dispersed. An object oriented database is one which is defined in classes and subclasses and is congruent with the data. Customer profiles, sales transactions, inventories and product catalogs are types of data and files which makes a computer database. A database manager gives the users the freedom of reading, writing and accessing reports. Databases and databases managers are prevalent in large systems but are also present in smaller mainframe systems and mid range systems as the AS/400 or personal computers. Sql is a language which is structured to make interactive queries and updating databases such as 1bm’s DB2, database products from Sybase and oracle and also Microsoft’s SQL Server (Actacommercii.co.za, 2015).
What does database bring to our world?
Databases have helped us in building large scale historical databases to enable us to test theories about the processes which are responsible for the rise of large scale societies in human history. The database has helped in evolving the sociopolitical organization of human societies. In recent world biology has been revolutionized by the usage of databases. Such as Gen Bank, which enable data collection. This process will be more useful if it comes to historical and social sciences. The data collected will help in accessing the research work into human societies (Bhatnagar Bhatia, 2014). Our aim is to use database not to change history or biology but to use database to help bridge the gap between sciences and humanities, to share and gather knowledge and then use what we have learnt about the past to shape our future
Databases have brought ms access and ms excel into our world without which no task would have been able to be complete by the managers.
Common uses of ms access and ms excel
Sharable output is easy to generate
Database management with multiple users
Display complex queries, data structuring, data subsets
Chart management, conditional formatting
Reports for data summarization
Statistical comparisons, calculations
Automation of common events
These are the key comparisons between Ms Access and Ms excel. In today’s world these two databases are used interchangeably.Ms excel is used for its statistics and mathematics and Access is used for displaying a lot of data in a structured manner.
What has Excel given to this world: Excel is an excellent tool when using spreadsheets. It excels at numerical data, many permutations of analysis. But unfortunately, when the size of the database is enlarged like for example with a government dataset, excel begins to shrink under the stress.
What has Access given to this world: Access is different from excel as where excel focuses on numerical access actually provides storage for multiple information so that it can be recalled and referred to across multiple places.
The largest difference between excel and access is the record retention method. Access provides its users the benefit of modifying the data stored in access any time possible. But the same thing is not possible in excel.
Other than excel and access there are other databases which can be largely categorized under
- Network DBMS
- Relational DBMS
- Object-oriented DBMS and
- Hierarchical DBMS
Network dbms: When the relationships among data in the database are among many to many it is said to be a Network dbms. Because of this many to many type, network dbms is extremely complicated. However, there are two basic elements i.e. sets to designate many –to-many relationships and records. High level languages like Pascal, FORTRAN, COBOL and C++ were used to set structures and implement records.
Relational dbms: Rdbms is treated in the form of a table. Three keys of rdbms are attributes, relation and domain. Some of the examples of Rdbms are ms access, ms, sql server ,ingress, oracle, Informix and Sybase.
Object –oriented DBMS: Object Oriented databases use smaller reusable parts of software’s called objects. The object oriented database stores the objects. It is able to handle many data types including video, graphics, audio and photographs. An object oriented database stores data from many media sources such as texts and photographs and in a multimedia format it produces work as output.
Hierarchical database: Hierarchical database is that database where one data is present in a subordinate way compared to the superior database. The items have a parent child relationship among them. the hierarchical data structure was made by IBM in 1968 and presented in information management systems ('Database Respository System (DBR) – a Web-based Database Management Approach for Modern Epidemiologic Studies', 2000)
Functions of Dbms:
To ensure consistency of data and data integrity on the database, a Dbms performs several functions. The Ten functions of Dbms are: transaction management, data dictionary management, transformation and presentation of data, data storage management, security management, recovery and backup management, multiuser access control, database access languages , database communication interfaces and finally application programming interfaces.
1. Transaction management: The Dbms must supply a method which will guarantee whether all the updates in a transaction are made. All the transactions must follow the acid properties.
2. Data dictionary management: the definitions of data elements are stored in data dictionary. The dbms uses this function to look up relationships and data components. This function eliminates data and structural dependency. The data dictionary is used by database administrators and is often hidden from the user.
3. Transformation and presentation of data: The difference between physical and logical data formats can be understood by using transformation and presentation of data.
4. Data storage management: This function of dbms is used for data validation rules, report definitions, storage of data, screen definitions, procedural code and structures that can contain picture and video formats.
5. Security management: One of the most important functions of dbms is security management. Specific users are allowed to access the database based on the set of rules given by security management. Users can access the database by using username and password. Other than that there are other forms of authentication which is rather costly. This function also restraints he user from seeing certain data’s.
6. Recovery and backup management: Databases can have outside threats which are dealt by recovery and backup management .Backup management looks after the data safety and security.
7. Multiuser access control: Multiuser access control is a very helpful tool for dbms .It enables multiple users to access the database at the same time without affecting the integrity of the database.
8. Database access languages: A non procedural language is a query language. Majority of dbms vendors support a query language. This function helps the users to specify what exactly the task that they want o is be done without specifically explaining how to do it.
9. Database communication interfaces: the requests of different users can be accepted with this function. A dbms can provide database access through internet using web browsers like Mozilla, Netscape and internet explorer.
10. Application programming interfaces: it is a set of protocols, routines and tools for building software applications. It expresses a software component in terms of its underlying types, outputs, inputs and operations (Dhawan, 2010).
What does a database do to a company’s bottom-line?
An organization is viewed as a pyramid like structure, strategic planning and policy making being on the top, control activities and management planning on the middle and finally operational activities on the bottom. Organizations should have control over their data resources. The corporate database contains certain images over which the decisions and actions in the organization are dependent. Employees in thousands of organizations use the databases to calculate invoice customers and sales estimates and to complete accounting reports. The workers use a computerized database to access the data. The usage of relational database management system ensures that it can manage relationships between the various database elements (Management-hub.com, 2015).
Data searches: the relational database management system ensures that a company can make and maintain its data over the system’s lifetime. Customers can search for a product using its color, brand, name, price and other features. The system enables the users to have access to the previous data’s with ease as it stores data in a sequential and predictable format.
Data Updates: It allows the users to enter new information’s, delete outdated data and update current records. it enters a new record in the table of the customer.
Data relationships: The relational database management system enables different data tables to relate to each other. While a table contains updated information about the employee data on its sales staff and another with data on its product sales the rdms system manages the two tables and creates a relationship between the two. This relationship can tell the management which salesperson has the highest sales and which product he is selling the most (Pathak, 2008).
Data Access: Modern rdms system uses a programming language known as sql or structured query language. to update, access and delete the data within its tables. These programs involving open source mysql systems and ms sql server allow outside systems to access its data via sql queries A web site can display product data including descriptions, prices and photos when the web software connects to the data contained within the rdms.
The external and internal forces of an organization demands that organization should exercise control over their data resources. the image contained in the database of the organization decides upon its decisions and actions. At the operational level, managerial decisions are taken and plans are produced which are captured formally and stored in the database of a corporate firm.
People in the organization, follow the query in the database o do regular operational activities. Middle management receives report comparing the present reports with the previous ones. All levels of an organization is supported by corporate databases and is vital for management process, decision making and operations. The computer applications penetrate into higher levels when an organization receives immense support from its operations. An MIS can mature as a tool for decision making, control and planning with operational database support (Saint-Leger, 2015).
Databases have helped us in building large-scale historical databases to enable us to test theories about the processes which is responsible for the rise of large scale societies in human history. Databases have brought ms access and ms excel into our world without which no task would have been able to be complete by the managers. Organizations have to manage their data assets carefully to make sure that they can be accessed and used by employees and managers all along the organizational levels. the management has to make sure that all the employees realize the benefit of managing data electronically they require the skills of using the database. The full benefits of database management system are long term and intangible (van den Hoven, 2002). Finally, the most important aim of data management is to aid in effective decision making to achieve objectives and goals and finally bring success to the business.
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