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Relational Database Writings 1994-1997 [Paperback]

C. J. Date , Hugh Darwen , David McGoveran

Price: £45.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

3 Sep 1998 0201398141 978-0201398144 1
This book is the fifth in Chris Date's well known Relational Database Writings series. Like its precursors, the book consists of a collection of papers on various aspects of relational technology. It is divided into four parts:

I. Theory is Practical
II. Relational Database Management
III. The Problem of Missing Information
IV. Relational vs. Nonrelational Systems

This unique collection combines practical advice on how to solve real world implementation problems with more thought-provoking and sometimes controversial articles. The first part consists of installments from Chris Date's regular column in Database Programming and Design magazine in which he takes a variety of theoretical aspects of relational technology and explains, in a non-academic way, just why those aspects are important and why they should be of interest to the database practitioner. In Part II, Hugh Darwen and David McGoveran comment on the true nature of databases and on the status of attempts to implement the relational model in the industry. There is also a detailed introduction to the ideas behind The Third Manifesto - the logical foundation for object/relational databases - something every database professional will want to read. Part III addresses the much discussed but serious issue of missing information and provides a well argued case for why many-valued logics are unsuitable as a basis for addressing the problem. Finally, Part IV provides a critical and sometimes controversial analysis of object databases. In addition, an appendix contains the transcript for a live presentation entitled "Database Graffiti".

Relational Database Writings 1994-1997 continues the tradition established by its predecessors and will need no further recommendation for readers familiar with them. It is essential reading for all serious database students and professionals.




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From the Back Cover

Relational Database Writings
1994-1997
by C. J. Date, with special contributions by Hugh Darwen and David McGoveran
QuoteXXX???
This book is the fifth in Chris Date’s well known Relational Database Writings series. Like its precursors, the book consists of a collection of papers on various aspects of relational technology. It is divided into four parts-
I. Theory is Practical
II. Relational Database Management
III. The Problem of Missing Information
IV. Relational vs. Nonrelational Systems
This unique collection combines practical advice on how to solve real world implementation problems with more thought-provoking and sometimes controversial articles. The first part consists of installments from Chris Date’s regular column in Database Programming and Design magazine in which he takes a variety of theoretical aspects of relational technology and explains, in a non-academic way, just why those aspects are important and why they should be of interest to the database practitioner. In Part II, Hugh Darwen and David McGoveran comment on the true nature of databases and on the status of attempts to implement the relational model in the industry. There is also a detailed introduction to the ideas behind The Third Manifesto - the logical foundation for object/relational databases - something every database professional will want to read. Part III addresses the much discussed but serious issue of missing information and provides a well argued case for why many-valued logics are unsuitable as a basis for addressing the problem. Finally, Part IV provides a critical and sometimes controversial analysis of object databases. In addition, an appendix contains the transcript for a live presentation entitled “Database Graffiti”.
Relational Database Writings 1994-1997 continues the tradition established by its predecessors and will need no further recommendation for readers familiar with them. It is essential reading for all serious database students and professionals.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
(to go on fly leaf)
C. J. Date is an independent author, lecturer, researcher and consultant specializing in relational database systems. He is best known for his books, in particular the Relational Database Writings series (of which this book is the fifth) and An Introduction to Database Systems, currently in its sixth edition, which is the standard text in the field. He has also recently published Foundation for Object/Relational Databases- The Third Manifesto (a collaboration with Hugh Darwen). Mr Date enjoys a reputation second to none for his ability to explain complex technical material in a clear and understandable fashion.
Hugh Darwen has been involved in software development since 1967 at IBM UK where he continues to be very active in the relational database arena. He is currently involved in the development of SQL international standards, including SQL3. His writings to date include his notable contributions to C.J.Date’s Relational Database Writings series and A Guide to the SQL Standard, now in its fourth edition. He is also a tutor for the Open University’s database courses.
David McGoveran is the founding president of Alternative Technologies, a relational database consulting firm based in California. He has consulted for numerous users and virtually every major DBMS vendor, covering needs such as database design, development methodology, performance tuning, and migration and integration. He is co-author of A Guide to SYBASE and SQL Server and is best known for his ability to blend practical solutions with a technical understanding, resulting in robust and flexible systems.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 2.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't pick this one first (but it's still good) 26 Jun 2000
By Jonathan Leffler - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I own all the SELECTED WRITINGS books by C J Date, includingthe 1991-1994 book ................. This is the fifth in the series, and is the least compelling of them. However, it is still a worthwhile purchase if you own the 1991-1994 book.
The first section reprints Date's articles from the now defunct Database Programming & Design magazine. They are interesting articles, especially the ones on quota queries.
The next section is entitled Relational Database Management and covers articles on the 25th Anniversary of the Relational Model, and What a Database Really Is, an introduction to The Third Manifesto, and a discusion on units and data types. These are interesting but not revelatory.
The next section is an extension of the diatribe against NULLS in SQL. The four articles or chapters by David McGoveran are extremely interesting, but also pretty tough going. The last two contain some practical advice on how to avoid nulls. The other two chapters in this section are responses by Date and his colleagues to other people's articles discussing the subject. If you've read the other books in this series, there is little new material in them. These are also tough going and although they they *do* make sense without the articles to which they refer, it is much harder to read them than it would be with the articles.
This complaint carries over, redoubled, into the last section, which consists of 5 chapters, three of which are replies to other people's articles about the Object-Domain vs Object-Relation mapping for OODBMS. While I have every sympathy with Date's view that the Object-Domain mapping makes sense, these articles do not stand well on their own when you have not had the opportunity to read the originals (and I haven't).
Overall, this is like the Curate's Egg -- good in parts. I'm not sorry I bought it, but if someone is starting to buy these books by Date, they'd be much better off with the 1989-1991 or 1991-1994 books than with this one.
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