[sword-devel] Relational Databases

Trevor Jenkins sword-devel@crosswire.org
Mon, 15 May 2000 15:01:55 GMT

On Mon, 15 May 2000 09:31:37 CEST, "Sjoerd Venema" <pegasusnl@hotmail.com>

> I have just subscribed to this mailing list. I am wondering if there are 
> developers around that now something about 'Relational Databases'.

I claim to know something about relational databases. :-)

> I am creating some sort of computerbible myself and i am basing it upon a
> relational database system.

I also claim to know something about "text databases"! (Having worked in
that field for 20 years). In the words of the old joke "I wouldn't start
from here", i.e., I would NOT use a relational database to handle textual
data at all. The closest I would come to relational databases is to store
index information in relational tables; of course, from fully inverted text
you can reconstruct the original text from the pointers.

>  I have already created a database scheme but I am wondering if it is 
> optional.

Do you mean "optional" or "optimal". I don't believe that there is one
"optimal" schema. The rightness (or less rightness) of a schema depends
upon the use to which the database it models will be put. even then how
"right" it is is a matter of opinion.

> I am studing Computer Science in the Netherlands and 'Relational 
> Datebases' come not along very often.

This surprises me greatly. If you'd said that network, hierarchical and
text databases are not taught then I'd say that you were correct. Or
perhaps the teaching of Comp Sci is better in the Netherlands. As the
relational algrebra or calculus provide a useful abstraction with which to
reason about database operations relation databases are normaly par of
undergraduate courses. Sadly, many courses only teach the relational
approach so the useful and more appropirate application of the other
formulations is never given.

> (I am not sure i am sending this message to the right mail address)

It's probably not but you can email me off line. I'm undertaking research
into complex databases issues so my knowledge is a little better.


<>< Re: deemed!