Database Management Basics

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Database management is a system of managing the information that a company needs to run its business operations. It involves storing data, disseminating it to applications and users and editing it when needed and monitoring changes to the data and stopping data corruption due unexpected failure. It is a component of the informational infrastructure of a company that aids in decision-making, corporate growth, and compliance with laws such as the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

The first database systems were invented in the 1960s by Charles Bachman, IBM and others. They evolved into information management systems (IMS) which allowed the storage and retrieve huge amounts of data for a wide range of uses, from calculating inventory to supporting complicated financial accounting and human resources functions.

A database is a collection of tables that store data according to 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 contains a number of fields, known as attributes, which provide information about the entities that comprise the data. The most widely used type of database that is currently in use is a relational model designed by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. The design is based on normalizing the data, making it easier to use. It is also easier to update data because it doesn’t require changing several databases.

Most DBMSs are able to support different types of databases by offering different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level concerns costs, scalability and other operational issues, like the physical layout of the database. The external level is how the database appears in user interfaces and other applications. It may include a mix of different external views (based on different data models) and may include virtual tables that are constructed using generic data to improve performance.

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