Database Management Basics

Database management is a system of managing information that is used to support a company’s business operations. It involves storing data, distributing it to users and applications making edits as needed and monitoring changes to data and preventing data corruption due to unexpected failure It is an element of a company’s total informational infrastructure that supports decision-making and growth of the company as well as compliance with laws such as the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

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

A database is a set of tables that arrange data according to a particular scheme, 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 set of attributes, or fields, which provide information about data entities. Relational models, created by E. F. “Ted” Codd in the 1970s at IBM, are the most well-known database type today. The concept is based on normalizing data to make it more user-friendly. It is also simpler to update data because it does not require the changing of many sections of the databases.

Most DBMSs can support multiple types of databases by offering different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level is focused on the cost, scalability, and other operational issues, like the physical layout of the database. The external level focuses on how the database is presented in user interfaces and other applications. It could comprise a combination of various external views (based on different data models) and may also include virtual tables that are constructed from generic data in order to improve performance.