Last updated on 2023-04-21 | Edit this page

Proposed Episode on Database Design

Q & A on Database Design (review if time)

  1. Order doesn’t matter
  2. Every row-column combination contains a single atomic value, i.e., not containing parts we might want to work with separately.
  3. One field per type of information
  4. No redundant information
  • Split into separate tables with one table per class of information
  • Needs an identifier in common between tables – shared column - to reconnect (foreign key).


  • Naming conventions are important because: * Names are used more than once * Names are not usually subject to change (for example, spelling errors)

  • Names should uniquely identify what the data is representing

  • Names should be descriptive and familiar

  • Names should adhere to certain standards: (General Tips) * Names should not contain spaces (for example, nameofdata) * Names should not start with numbers, rather add numbers at the end of the name (for example, name$ * Names should be full words, not abbreviations (for example, doctor) * Underscores can separate words (for example, name_of_data) * Data types are not names (for example, integer_data instead of integer) * Names are often in lowercase (for example, name) * DO NOT use quotes when naming a table or field

Other database management systems

  • Access or Filemaker Pro

    • GUI
    • Forms w/QAQC
    • But not cross-platform
  • MySQL/PostgreSQL

    • Multiple simultaneous users
    • More difficult to setup and maintain
  • Microsoft SQL Server (SQL Server)

    • Multiple simultaneous users
    • Easy to use
    • Most complex part is development and troubleshooting
  • MongoDB (for Big Data needs)

    • Easy to scale
    • Performance is good since it is equipped to work with big data