Data Modelling and Database Design

Reflection Report

During the course of completion of this particular assignment, we got to learn and practical experience about a lot of concepts about the database design and database management. To briefly summarize we gained the theoretical as well as practical knowledge on the following database concepts:

  • Database Design Concepts.
  • Database operations:
    • Table Creation, Table Structure Modification, Adding the data into the table, deleting the data from the table, Updating or modifying the data from the tables, etc.
    • About the various Anomalies which occur while carrying out the different database operations such as Insert, Delete, and Update, etc.
  • Use of Spreadsheet for Data storage & manipulation and the Strengths & weakness of using the Excel Spreadsheets for storing & managing data.

Database Design Concepts

We learned about given a case study or the situation of how we can identify the various database objects or the entities such as tables in the given context. Also how to describe those objects and the entities using the properties or the various attributes.

For example, the following Database objects and Attributes were identified in the given case study.

Sr. No.

Database Object/ Table

Attributes

Description

1

BOOK_GENRES

Genre_id, Genre

This table stores the details about the various types of book genres such as fantasy, Short Story, Legend, etc.

The Genre_id is the Primary Key, which can uniquely identify each Book Genre

2

BOOKS

Book_id, Book_name,Author_name,Genre_id

This table is used to store the details of different books available in the library.

Book_id is the primary key that uniquely identifies each book in the library.

The Author name stores the name of the Book author & Genre_id is the foreign key that stores the details about the book genre.

3

MEMBER_DETAILS

Member_id, Member_name, Member_address, Member_email

This table stores the details about the Members of the library. The Member_id attribute identifies each member of the library uniquely.

It also stores the name of the member, the address of the member, and the email id of the library member.

4

LIBRARY_STAFF

Staff_id, Staff name, Staff_address, Staff_email,

Staff_address, Date_of_joining

This table is used to store the details of the Library staff members. The Staff_id is the primary Key attribute, which uniquely identifies each staff member of the library. It also stores the details such as the name of the staff member, staff email, staff member address, and the details about the date of joining of the staff member.

5

TRANSACTION

Transact_id,Transact_Date,Transact_Date,Date_of_return, Member_id, Book_id, Staff_id

The TRANSACTION table is used to store the details about the Book Transaction. The Transact_id is the primary key & uniquely identifies each book transaction of the library. It also stores the details about the Book_id of the book, the Member_id of the member who has taken the book, and the theStaff_id of library staff involved in the transaction. These three attributes thus act as the foreign keys from the tables BOOKS, MEMBER_DETAILS, LIBRARY_STAFF.

Thus we got a good knowledge about all the above-mentioned concepts such as Tables or Relations, Attributes, Keys, the identification of the relationships between different relations by means of the foreign key and relationship table, etc. related to the Database system design in the process of completion of this particular assignment.

Database Operations

In this particular assignment, we also learned about the various operations in the database. We learned about the schema or the structure of database objects.

We learned about the operation such as the creation of the tables, the datatypes that are used for the different attributes such as number, date, etc. while creating the table.

We learned about how we can alter the structure of the database objects when we added extra attributes in the table by the creation of the table initially.

We also performed the various operations on the database objects such as the insertion of data into the table, deletion of data from the table, and updating or modification of the already existing records in the database objects.

In this process of performing these various operations, we came to know about the various anomalies that can occur in the database tables if the database is not designed properly initially.

For example:

When we were updating the records in tables like GENRES or the BOOK or the MEMBER_DETAILS or the LIBRARY_STAFF tables we had to also update the records in the table which were using or refereeing to those record such as the TRANSACTION table manually as we could not implement the Relationships between these table in excel spreadsheets as it is not a full-fledge database management system.

Such a situation leads to the data being inconsistent as we may tend to manually make mistake or forget updating all the data in several different tables.

Thus we experienced all the different types of Anomalies such as the Insertion anomaly, the Deletion Anomaly, and Updation anomaly in the database and the database tables.

Use of Spreadsheet for Data Storage & Manipulation and The Strengths & Weakness of Using the Excel Spreadsheets for Storing & Managing Data

We also gain experience in the use of excel spreadsheets for database creation and manipulation. During the course, we learned that excel is not a database management system and has several weaknesses when dealing with database management.

 A simple example, we set the date as the data type of some columns in tables, such as Date of _joining in LIBRAY_STAFF table, but by mistake, if we entered some integer of character values it did allow us to do so, which wouldn't have happened if we had used DBMS software like MS-ACCESS or MySQL thus increasing the efficiency and speed.

The only strength we found was the ease of use, but it doesn’t support most of the important concepts related to Databases such as Creation of Primary or Foreign keys, or relating the two tables by itself which can be easily implemented with the DBMS Softwares.

So the concepts such as Data integrity, Data Consistency, Security, and easy and error-free insertion & retrieval of data, which can be implemented with databases like MS-ACCESS or MySQL cannot be implemented in EXCEL alone.

Thus to conclude the completion of this Assignment was a great learning & knowledge gaining experience.

References for File-Based Database Design Assessment

“Excel Databases: Creating Relational Tables.” PCWorld, 6 Nov. 2017, www.pcworld.com/article/3234335/excel-databases-creating-relational-tables.html. Accessed 3 Oct. 2020.

https://www.facebook.com/iSubodhSharma. “Different Types or Genres of Books With Examples.” GladReaders, 4 Nov. 2018, gladreaders.com/types-or-genres-of-books/#classic.

https://www.facebook.com/lifewire. “How to Track Contacts and Collections With an Excel Database.” Lifewire, 2019, www.lifewire.com/create-a-database-in-excel-3123446.

365 Data Science. “Database vs Spreadsheet - Advantages and Disadvantages.” YouTube, 3 Nov. 2017, www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4Xt0M1mHbc&ab_channel=365DataScience.

“DB Concepts and Design.” Ubalt.Edu, 2020, home.ubalt.edu/abento/300/DBdesign/#:~:text=Database%20design%20concepts,and%20represent%20entities%20and%20relations.

“Data Anomalies.” Database Management, 2020, databasemanagement.fandom.com/wiki/Category:Data_Anomalies#:~:text=These%20problems%20arise%20from%20relations,redundancy%20and%20a%20partial%20update.

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