Saturday, December 29, 2012

Site Update

1.
The new Quote of the Week posted on the QUOTES page is a complement to the previous quote and is by the same author.

2.
Both the quote and the new To Laugh or Cry? item posted to the LAUGH/CRY? page have to do with the author referenced in my prvious post, The Clouding Syndrome. Does he really think that titling his article the way he did elevates him to Codd's level?

My friend David McGoveran has some comments forthcoming, but in the meantime perhaps this is closer to reality.

3.
Added to FP ONLINE page:
  • My latest All Analytics column.
  • A LinkedIn exchange in which I participated (as of this writing my comments are not posted yet). One of the participants recommended the very same article by Meijer mentioned in 1.
4.
For quite a while I just could not display a LinkedIn Share button after each post, next to the other buttons provided by Blogger, no matter what I did and neither Google, nor LinkedIn helped. I was finally able to display it at the bottom of posts, but not exactly where I wanted. I am working on relocating it, but in the meantime it is usable where it is.



Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The Clouding Syndrome (REVISED)

Over the years I got enormous and nasty flak for my arguments about the sorry state of foundation knowledge in the industry, the contamination of academia by it and the increasing deterioration in both.  On one occasion, my claim that the designers of SQL did not really understand the relational model was dismissed as utter nonsense. But if that made me a crank, so were Ted Codd and Chris Date.

My friend Jim Lowden emailed me:
Last month [there] was a hopeless article All Your Database Are Belong to Us about DBMSs [in CACM] so badly mistaken, that it was too dreary even to reply. [The author] managed to get the Closed World Assumption pretty much backwards, if that's possible.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Site Update

1.
A new Quote of the Week was posted on the QUOTES page.

2.
A new To Laugh or Cry? item was posted on the LAUGH/CRY? page.

3.
A link to an exchange in which I participated was posted on the FP ONLINE page.

4.
I have added APPLIED MATHEMATICS FOR DATABASE PROFESSIONALS by Toon Koppelaars and Lex Haan to the recommended books widget on the home page.


Sunday, December 16, 2012

"Schema-less Models" and the New World Disorder

There is a tendency in the database field to distort, use poorly defined
terminology, or use it inconsistently.  As I already argued in previous posts, technologies that are founded or used without foundation knowledge and understanding will prove costly fads.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Site Update

1.
A new Quote of the Week was posted on the QUOTES page. Consider it in the context of my posts on database vs. application enforced integrity.

2.
A new To Laugh or Cry? item was posted on the LAUGH/CRY? page.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Brother, Spare Me the Paradigms

In an interview Louis Davidson is mostly right and his heart is in the right place. A few quibbles and clarifications.
Consider dimensional design and Big Data as two additional paradigms. Data warehousing has not only allowed us to take the strain of reporting off our OLTP servers (leading to better reporting capabilities), but it has also given us the ability to support larger relational databases capturing more and more business data.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Site Update (UPDATED)

1.
A new Quote of the Week was posted on the QUOTES page.
I contend that in a certain sense the perspective is upside down and backwards. Can you figure out why?

2.
A new To Laugh or Cry? item was posted on the LAUGH/CRY? page.

3.
My latest Data Fundamentals column and a thread I participated in were posted on the ONLINE page.

4.
From Erwin Smout (via email):
In 2009, the ACM re-published Codd's paper Derivability, redundancy and consistency of relations stored in large data banks.

For searching purposes, the ACM "classifies" each published article using some "taxonomy" of their own making. Apparently, Codd's paper is classified under "Database Administration" and not under "Relational Database Model".
Says a lot, doesn't it?

UPDATE: I was wondering what ACM did classify under "relational model" (you can probably guess what I suspected). So I asked Erwin to check and here's what he found:

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Data Warehouses and the Logical-Physical Confusion

(Erwin Smout is co-author of this post.)

In Implementation Data Modeling Styles Martijn Evers writes:
Business Intelligence specialists are often on the lookout for better way to solve their data modeling issues. This is especially true for Data warehouse initiatives where performance, flexibility and temporalization are primary concerns. They often wonder which approach to use, should it be Anchor Modeling, Data Vault, Dimensional or still Normalized (or NoSQL solutions, which we will not cover here)? These are modeling techniques focus around implementation considerations for Information system development. They are usually packed with an approach to design certain classes of information systems (like Data warehouses) or are being used in very specific OLTP system design. The techniques focus around physical design issues like performance and data model management sometimes together with logical/conceptual design issues like standardization, temporalization and inheritance/subtyping.

Implementation Data Modeling techniques (also called physical data modeling techniques) come in a variety of forms. Their connection is a desire to pose modeling directives on the implemented data model to overcome several limitations of current SQL DBMSes. While they also might address logical/conceptual considerations, they should not be treated like a conceptual or logical data model. Their concern is implementation. Albeit often abstracted from specific SQL DBMS platforms they nonetheless need to concern themselves with implementation considerations on the main SQL platforms like Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server. These techniques can be thought of as a set of transformations from a more conceptual model (usually envisaged as an ER diagram on a certain 'logical/conceptual' level but see this post for more info on "logical" data models).