The history of databases is the history of experts who, at various times, tried to understand their complexity. The first information explosions of the early computer era had a lasting impact on how we think about structuring information. The practices, structures, and use of databases , so innovative at the time, have become an integral part of how organizations manage data today.

database header illustration

Our company also did not stand aside. It is often difficult for organizations to keep up with dynamic changes in database and AI technology. KLONA staff will help you figure it all out. Thanks to many years of experience, the company’s team will be able to determine exactly what needs to be optimized in your business and offer innovative solutions to the problem.

In past articles, we have already discussed the concepts of big data and artificial intelligence . Now we propose to analyze what databases are, what are their types and where they are useful.

Imagine that you have your own online gardening store. In order to record purchase data , one table was created with records: with the date of purchase, product name, quantity of goods and addresses of buyers.

database table

Let’s say Sergey Kovalenko called you and asks about his purchase. You check the table, and there are several such Sergeyev Kovalenko in the database. How to be?

It is much more convenient to create separate tables of customers, orders and products.

Now these tables, although they seem so different, are actually connected . For example, each customer and product of a store has its own ID, and in the table these IDs are placed on one common row. Agree, now it is much easier and more convenient to work with customer data.

database management

What was before databases?

The way computers manage data has changed dramatically over the past few decades. Today’s users take for granted many of the benefits of a data warehouse system.

One way to store information on a computer is to store it in permanent files . The company’s system has a number of application programs; each of which is designed to manipulate data files. These applications were written at the request of users in organizations. New applications are added to the system when needed. The system just described is called the file system .

file system essence

In the 60s, database management systems ( DBMS ) were created. The technology made it possible to arrange huge volumes of information . The difficult task of organizing the records on the media for optimal access was now handled by a subsystem called the DBMS.

What are databases?

Databases are collections of organized information .

Any collection of information is an information system . A payroll file, a stack of hospital forms for patients, a collection of information about a company’s clients – these are all databases.

Information stores not only provide places to store data, but also provide an organized structure for it. In addition, the technology provides mechanisms for interacting with information. The databases allow you to query , create , modify and delete data.

Business information systems

  • Execution of business operations
  • Organization and tracking of customers , assortment and employees
  • Ensuring adequate query performance
  • Ease of dealing with paperless consumer demand
  • Storing different types of information
  • Process Automation

What are databases made of?

In total, there are 5 main components of information systems:

DBMS components
  • Hardware . This is the actual computer system for storing and working with the database
  • Data . This is a set of facts in information systems, the source material of the generated information.
  • Access language . It is a simple language that allows users to write commands to perform operations on data.
  • Software . It is a set of programs, instructions that tell the computer what to do.
  • Procedures . Refers to general instructions for using the DBMS. This includes procedures for configuring and installing the DBMS, logging in and out of systems software, management, creating backups, and more.

What is a DBMS?

DBMS (database management system) is a software package that can be used to manage, validate and retrieve this information system.

Two paradigms first emerged: the hierarchical model and the ” network ” model embodied in Charles Bachmann’s integrated dataset.

In traditional file systems, information was stored in files. Let’s take the example of data on students in a school. The Accounts Department keeps records of tuition fees and has a separate file. And the examination department keeps records of grades for the entire period of study of each of the students and also has its own separate file. These two departments are interested in different information about students, so they do not have one common file.

DBMS file systems comparison

But as we can see, there are common data in the files, such as the student code and name, which are repeated in two tables, which leads to data duplication and storage waste.

In the DBMS approach, all data is stored in a single environment and already several people have access to information, depending on what they are interested in, such as student code, grades, accounts and much more. So, using a small example, we showed how to avoid data repetition, besides, it is much more convenient to work with a DBMS.

The DBMS acts as an intermediate layer between the user and the actual information system. Users write logical structured queries using the DBMS, thanks to the system, changes occur and the results are reflected in the database . Database management systems are designed to make it easier to view data sets by providing administrative operations such as tuning, performance monitoring, and restoring from a backup.

how a DBMS manages databases

Database types

  1. Distributed DB
  2. Centralized database
  3. Personal data base
  4. Relational database
  5. Operational database
  6. Hierarchical database
  7. cloud database
  8. Object-oriented database
database types

Relational databases

A relational database stores information in the form of tables . A table is made up of rows and columns , in a relational system, rows are records and columns are fields. The term RBD was first introduced in the 1970s by E. F. Codd of IBM, and later, in 1974, Donald D. Chamberlin and Raymond F. Boyce released SQL , or the Standard Query Language , which allows you to interact with a relational database.

A relational information system is what its name implies: a tool for storing different types of information that are related in different ways.

IDNameAgeFavorite food
2Sarah8ice cream

The structure of the relational model allows you to store information in an ordered manner . For the purpose of extracting data, you can run a query on a set of information. In SQL, query results can be filtered and manipulated using various expressions, giving users precise control over exactly what data is displayed in the result set.

Non-relational databases

Unlike relational databases, non-relational databases do not have tables , rows, or keys. In essence, this type of database is designed to store unstructured information , such as email messages, images, videos, and business documents.

Non-relational databases are called NoSQL because most often they do not use SQL queries , although some systems do support them. Some of the common NoSQL databases are MongoDB, Apache Cassandra, Redis, and Couchbase.

There are several ways to create non-relational information stores, some of them are using key-value information systems, column -family data stores, graph data stores, and document data stores .

non-relational database types

Features of non-relational databases

  • Flexibility . Working with any type of data is simplified thanks to non-relational types of information stores.
  • Scalability and responsiveness . Massive databases scale well on requests and provide fast responses to requests.
  • Zero downtime . High availability with near-real-time information replication.
  • Cloud compatible . The scalability of cloud computing architecture is ideally combined with non-relational databases.
  • Multiple information structures . Various data types and information system formats are available with multiple models.

Instead of a SQL query language, the NoSQL database uses object-relational mapping ( ORM ). The concept of the technology is to write queries using a programming language . Some of the well-known ORMs are Java, Javascript, .NET, and PHP.

Programs for creating databases

Here is a list of popular DBMS:

What are the disadvantages of a database?

The setup, operation and maintenance of information systems have some common problems as the following:

  1. Large database volumes

A large database will perform worse over time . This can often go unnoticed, so it’s important to do regular audits and health checks on your database to control the size and make sure it doesn’t contain unnecessary data.

  1. Security

Data is a valuable business asset. Protecting information systems requires skilled cybersecurity personnel , which is often costly.

  1. Bad persistent requests

Sometimes this is the result of incremental tuning as the database evolves, and sometimes the queries were poorly written from the start. Whatever the reason, an inefficient query can seriously affect the performance and stability of systems.

  1. Integrity

Achieving this data is not always easy, it is necessary that access to databases be granted only to those who have the right to work with them.

  1. Resource consumption

According to Gartner, three-quarters of all databases will be in the cloud by next year. While the cloud can make it easier to operate and maintain databases, it still leaves room for hardware and configuration considerations. If the needs of your data array change over its lifetime, you may find that the capacity must increase as your data array grows .

Database Perspectives

Now developers and IT teams have much more options in creating and working with databases. The sheer variety of different deployment options aims to simplify, but this can be confusing. With so many options available, people are more likely to choose options that offer short-term benefits but are less valuable in the long run than others.

relational databases

History teaches us that technology does not always continue on its existing trajectory . Disruptive technologies are emerging that create gaps that cannot be extrapolated and cannot always be fully foreseen.

That being said, there are several trends in computer technology that go beyond database architecture and could greatly influence the information systems of the future, here are some of them:

Since the dawn of digital databases, there has been a strong conflict between speed savings and storage savings. The media that offers the most savings when storing large amounts of data (magnetic disk, tape) offers the slowest time and therefore the worst throughput and latency economics. Conversely, the media with the lowest latency and highest throughput (memory, SSD) is the most expensive per storage unit.

Blockchain is a distributed ledger that underpins the Bitcoin cryptocurrency.

Blockchains are arguably a new kind of shared distributed database. Similar to systems based on the Dynamo model, data on the blockchain is redundantly distributed across a large number of hosts. In the current database system, the database owner has absolute control over the data stored in the database. However, in the Blockchain system, ownership remains with the creator of the data.

The use of quantum effects to create new types of computers was popularized by physicist Richard Feynman back in the 1980s . The basic concept is to use the behavior of subatomic particles as the building blocks of computation.

Our company KLONA is engaged in the development, configuration and modification of databases . Contact us and we will determine exactly what database your business needs.