A database is an organized collection of data in digital form stored in an electronic device. Databases store data in different formats which can be retrieved for use easily and effectively. The organization of data in databases models reality relevant in real life scenario. The manner in which it is modeled is such that it supports all the processes requiring the information. The term databases therefore refer to the logical and physical implementation of structures that support the storage and retrieval of data
In many organizations, databases form the most important aspect of data management. The common use of database is to manage data in any organization. Management of data involves practices such as retrieval, insertion, storage, maintenance of data integrity and confidentiality. Databases are used therefore to enforce integrity constraints in data . A major use of the databases also is the organization of data resource. Databases allow an organization to organize data in a way that is easy to comprehend and make useful meaning of the same. Without databases, data organization and management would therefore be thrown in to serious disorganization.
Databases are implemented in different architectures. Database architecture describes the database structure and the respective data applications used. It refers to how data is manipulated as a result of the database organization. It describes the data mappings of data artifacts, data qualities and applications and how the same are interrelated . To some extend database architecture may be viewed as an extension of data modeling. Database architectures consist of three levels namely the conceptual, external and the internal.
Relational database model clearly separates the three levels. Relational databases architecture is the commonly used architecture in many organizations. Relational databases establish relationships between entities in a database. It allows easy retrieval of information by use of association. It is therefore easy to implement and use. The three levels mentioned that distinguishes the model are discussed below;
The first level is the external level which is tasked with defining the way individual clients or end users evaluate the organization of the respective relevant data in the database. Many views at the external level can be implemented in one database. Users can therefore have varying views of the database but of relevance is the view that makes sense to the user.
Conceptual level provides a unifying aspect of different views that are external in a coherent global manner. It comprises all information and data that all views use in the presentation of relevant data to the end user. Conceptual level forms the actual backbone of the database. It is provided in a simple generic manner.
Internal level; this level actually is the physical level of the database. It entails the productivity, cost, scalability and other database operational matters. The conceptual map of the database is defined at this level. The level also gives support using features like indexes that improve performance of databases. It also occasionally keeps data that is specific views as well as taken from data which is generic. .
Microsoft SQL servers, Oracle DBMS among others are some of the applications that allow the implementation of relations databases in an organization. They make the work of data management and storage an easy and effective task. Access also allows the implementation of databases in a relational manner.
In conclusion, relational databases from the greater part of the database models used in many organizations. The advantages the model/architecture introduces in the management of data are numerous.
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