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Can BaseNow do this for me?
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Posted 8/8/2004 8:23 AM
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Active: 8/8/2004
Posts: 1

Hi

Suppose that whatever people, since the invention of drawing symbols andwriting, have entered into the cells of tables consisting of rows and columns have been recorded in a database, it will sure make for a lot of knowledge management potential.

OK, we have spreadsheets available for exactly this purpose. But a lot of tabular data is recorded in word processor documents and database forms.

That spreadsheet confronts the user with thousands of row and hundreds of columns. But you only want to record 20 rows x 5 columns for a specificly identified chunk of data. And then you want to move to a next table of 3 rows x 3 columns.

So suppose datatypists had only one piece of software with one major menu command which is "CREATE TABLE". The button is clicked and the following fields apear:

* Title

* Subtitle

* Note

* Column 1 Heading

* Row 1 Heading

* A blank cell.

The datatypist enters the data for these blank fields. One of the fields remains highlighted. Then Control up, left, down or right arrows are pressed and additional rows and colummns are created. Data is typed into the cells until the table is complete. The datatypist presses the button again and a new blank form appears for the next table.

The software evolves to distinguish between classification tables and alpha-numeric tables. Columns can be added which are based on formulas and colums can be sorted. One can scroll through the whole database and sort it. It even allows searches for cell data. Later versions allow for correlation between tables e.g. the table which displays the GDP of nations is correlated with the table of Ph.Ds in computer science for each nation to give a new table of computer science Ph.Ds per GDP per nation. The structure becomes a de-facto standard for tabular data. Internet users start to query tables for research purposes.

The software also recognises that people people record data in the following ways:

* Numbered an bullet lists. Hence it displays fields for a statement which introduces list items.

* Headings followed by paragraphs.

* Diagrams which indicate relations between variables and components.

Is something like this available as a distinct piece of software or as a front-end to any existing database?

Thanks

Johan Groenewald

Cape Town

South Africa

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Posted 8/9/2004 11:14 AM
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Active: 3/7/2010
Posts: 64

Dear Johan,

 

What you are saying really makes sense. It is easier to manage focused tables that contain one type of data than to include every possible piece of information into a single table. I also think that you are right about capturing human entered text that is not structured as tables and columns.

 

There are two database concepts that can help you understand how the database technology solves both problems. The first one is called "Normalization". It suggests creating greater number of specialized tables with fewer columns. For more information, please see this web page: http://www.basenow.com/help/Creating_a_database.asp

 

The second concept is called "full text indexing". This is in general what Google is doing with web pages. It does not matter how information is organized on any web page, you are able to find it quickly thanks to the full text index Google creates by scanning all the text on a web page. While you can use BaseNow to normalize your database, "full text indexes" are feature your database of choice needs to include. I am a big fan of Microsoft SQL Server and I can recommend some web pages that further explain the concept and how it relates to this product:

http://www.schemamania.org/jkl/booksonline/SQLBOL70/html/8_ar_da_12.htm

http://www.sqlteam.com/item.asp?ItemID=114

http://tutorials.findtutorials.com/read/id/416

http://www.sql-server-performance.com/tb_search_optimization.asp

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Posted 9/27/2004 11:54 PM
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Active: 9/27/2004
Posts: 1

Hi

I want to know that can BASENOW convert my database design which is in 2nd normal form to 3rd normal form. and can it do it in reverse that is from 3rd normal form to 2nd normal form

 

Looking for you positive reply

Thank you<

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Posted 9/28/2004 7:59 AM
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Active: 3/7/2010
Posts: 64
BaseNow is not able to automatically normalize and de-normalize your database. You would need to do that manually.

In my opinion, the best tool for managing the database structure on a conceptual and logical level is Microsoft Visio Enterprise. You can use Visio to work with Entity-Relationships diagrams and to take advantage of ORM which enables you to create a database structure using natural language. For more information, please visit these web pages:
http://www.microsoft.com/office/visio/
http://www.orm.net/overview.html
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