"The Relational Database Advantage"
Terry L. Reece
FIRST DRAFT Terry L. Reece
September 6, 2005 803 Autumn Breeze Ct.
Herndon, VA 2290
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 1
Atlantic Technical Institute’s logo and tag line “Wave of
the Future” appear in the center of the frame on a black
The ATI logo fades as the title of the video, “The
Relational Database Advantage,” replaces it.
INT. FOYER OF A PRIVATE HOME - DAY
We see a front door with a mail slot.
A casually dressed lady picks up the mail from floor where
it has dropped through the mail slot in the front door to
her home. She opens one of the envelopes, and she begins to
While you may not be aware of
it, computer technology
touches the lives of millions
of people daily, and probably
yours too. Every time you
receive an advertisement or
bill in the mail, it was
probably generated by a
computer. This means that
your information is stored in
INT. OFFICE CUBICLE - DAY
It has a desk with a computer monitor, keyboard, and mouse.
The walls have the usual calendar, memos, and cube-art.
A man sitting in the wheeled office chair is pointing at a
spreadsheet displayed on the computer screen as he faces a
lady seated next to him. She is holding a report and
looking at the spreadsheet on the screen. He gestures as he
talks, explaining the spreadsheet on his computer.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 2
This is especially true in
the workplace. Your
information as a company
employee is most likely
stored in a database. It may
hold your name, job title,
pay rate, and many other
facts about you. This enables
your company to keep track of
the hours you work and
calculate how much vacation
you have accrued. Also, you
may work with a database as
part of your job. In fact, it
may be a relational database.
INT. SUPERMARKET PRODUCE SECTION- DAY
It is a typical produce section, well lit with shelves and
bins bursting with fresh fruits and vegetables.
A married couple walks down the isle pushing a shopping
cart loaded with groceries. The man patiently waits with
the cart while his wife stops and inspects the apples in
one of the bins.
Even away from work and home,
at the market for example,
you may be affected by
computer technology. Retail
businesses use them to ensure
that when you get to the
market, the groceries you
need will be waiting and that
they will be accurately
priced and ready to go.
Again, it’s a safe bet that a
relational database played a
part in your shopping
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 3
A PHOTO OF CLIFFORD BERRY
A black and white photo of the ABC machine with Clifford
Berry at the controls fills the center of the frame.
Many modern conveniences and
our present way of life got
their start around 1940 with
the invention of the first
electronic computer by John
V. Atanasoff, a professor at
Iowa State University. He
built it with help from his
graduate student Clifford
The photo of the ABC machine shrinks to take a position at
the left side of the frame. Another black and white photo
slides into view over the top of it to occupy the center of
the frame. It is the ENIAC computer.
This development was quickly
followed in 1945 by the
Integrator And Computer, also
know as ENIAC.
The ENIAC picture shrinks and takes its place at the center
of the frame along side the ABC picture. Another black and
white photo of the UNIVAC computer slides in from the left,
over the other pictures, to occupy the center of the frame.
Again, in 1951, the UNIVAC
computer was the first
machine produced for the
At about the same time of
these developments, the first
computerized databases came
into being. The goal was to
produce a system that would
make accessing data fast and
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 4
GRAPHIC - FLAT DATABASE
We see a vertically oriented rectangle in the middle of the
frame. It is the EMPLOYEE data table with columns and rows
of data filling it. The columns are labeled: EMP_ID,
LAST_NAME, FIRST_NAME, and HIRE_DATE. None of the rows is
Flat databases were the first
on the scene. They are just
simple lists of data that
have been sorted on one or
Each line of data, starting at the top, is replaced by
another line of data. When the animation finishes, each
record is in alphabetical order and the names of employees
with the same last name appear together in the list.
However, new advances soon
led to the development of the
hierarchical database that
links information together
into ranks of different
The sorted list shrinks in frame and moves to a location at
the left side of the frame. A hierarchical diagram slides
into view from the left, over the top of the previous
graphic to fill most of the frame.
Next in line came the
networked database that
allowed other relationships
to be created between pieces
The hierarchical diagram shrinks and takes a position at
the center of the frame next to the flat database graphic.
Then, a larger, networked graphic slides in from the left
to fill most of the frame.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 5
Still, as popular as some of
these databases were, they
were not very flexible or
easy to work with. This, in
turn led to the development
of the relational database.
A large red logo, "Oracle," against a white field appears.
It fills the frame.
In 1979, System Development
Laboratories released Oracle,
the first commercial
relational database. It
combined the simplicity of
the flat database with the
abilities of the networked
GRAPHIC - SQL LOGO
The capital letters "SQL", black against a white field,
come into view. As the narration proceeds, each letter
briefly glows red as it is mentioned.
In 1986, the Structured Query
Language, S - Q - L, became
an industry standard for
databases. Its English like
features made the relational
database easier to use than
Since then, the relational
database has become the
premier database technology
in business . . .
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 6
A portion of a dollar bill flies in from the lower right to
briefly fill the frame and then shrinks to take a position
at the upper left quadrant of the frame. The background is
a light gray, and the SQL logo is no longer seen.
Science and medicine . . .
A symbol of the medical profession, white against a blue
field, moves in from the lower left to briefly fill the
frame than then shrinks to take a position at the upper,
right quadrant of the frame.
infrastructure . . .
A symbol of a toothed gear, black against a light tan
field, moves in from the upper right to briefly fill the
frame than then shrinks to take a position at the lower,
left quadrant of the frame.
. . . And government - local,
state, and federal.
A stylized graphic of the U.S. capital dome with the
American flag as the background flies in from the upper
left to briefly fill the frame than then shrinks to take a
position at the lower, right quadrant of the frame.
GRAPHIC - DATABASE TABLE
The EMPLOYEE data table is in the middle of the frame. It
has columns labeled: EMP_ID, LAST_NAME, FIRST_NAME, and
At the heart of the
relational database is the
data table. On close
inspection, it looks a lot
like a flat database.
A glowing green outline surrounds the leftmost table column
briefly and fades, and another, until all of the columns
have been outlined in green from left to right.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 7
The basic data table is
simple. It has columns of
data which hold individual
items of data like numbers,
text, and dates.
A glowing green line surrounds the top row in the table
briefly and fades, and another, until all of the records
have been outlined in green from top to bottom.
A row in a table consists of
a group of columns or fields.
Together, they constitute a
complete data record. A data
table can hold any number of
GRAPHIC - (CONTINUED) A GROUP OF RECORDS.
The four or five data records contain employee data sorted
by last and first name. In the header row at the top, each
field has a header that identifies the content. Some of the
last names in the records are the same, and they group
As with the flat database,
data tables can be sorted and
searched in any order.
A glowing green outline surrounds the left most field of
the top record briefly. The header, "EMPLOYEE_ID,"
identifies the field in the row.
Linking records together in
complex relationships depends
on the primary key. This
field holds a value that
uniquely identifies a record.
No other record in the table
can have this value. The
system can generate it
automatically, or the user
can assign the value.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 8
A glowing green outline surrounds another field in the
record at the right identified with "HEALTH_PLAN_ID" in its
When the primary key from one
data table occupies a field
in another table, it becomes
a foreign key. It links the
records of one data table to
the records of another.
GRAPHIC - TWO DATA TABLES
The two tables are separated by some space and centered in
the frame. One is an abbreviated EMPLOYEE table and the
other is the HEALTH_PLAN table.
The EMPLOYEE_ID column is outlined in green in the EMPLOYEE
In the two data tables seen
here, EMPLOYEE_ID is a
primary key for records in
the EMPLOYEE table, and . . .
The PLAN_ID is outlined in green in the HEALTH_PLAN table.
PLAN_ID performs the same job
for records in the
The HEALTH_PLAN_ID column in the EMPLOYEE table is outlined
However, the HEALTH_PLAN_ID
field in the EMPLOYEE table
is a foreign key.
A red line grows out from the first record in the EMPLOYEE
table. It reaches out to point to the third record in the
HEALTH_PLAN table. That record has a value in the PLAN_ID
field that matches the one in HEALTH_PLAN_ID field of the
first EMPLOYEE record.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 9
It holds the primary key
value of a record in the
HEALTH_PLAN table. In this
way it links the two tables
Red lines stretch out from all of the records in the
EMPLOYEE table to point to related records in the
HEALTH_PLAN table. Each will have matching foreign and
primary key values. The lines crisscross each other. Hold
this for six seconds before transition.
This is called a one-to-one
relationship. A record in one
table links to one record in
the other. It is based on the
value that their foreign and
primary keys have in common.
GRAPHIC - TWO DATA TABLES
One of the tables is labeled "CUSTOMER" and the other
"PURCHASES." Three lines stretch out from the first record
in the CUSTOMER table to point to the first, third, and
fourth records in the PURCHASES table.
When one record in a data
table matches more than one
record in another, this is
called a one-to-many
The CUSTOMER_ID field in the first record of the CUSTOMER
table is outlined in green. The CUST_ID field is outlined
in red in three records in the PURCHASES table.
Here, the primary key in the
first record in the CUSTOMER
table matches the foreign key
in records the PURCHASES
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 10
GRAPHIC - THREE DATA TABLES
From left to right, the three data tables are labeled:
"Customer," "Orders," and "Salesman." This is the setup for
the many-to-many relationship.
Many-to-many relationships in
a relational database
leverage off of the first two
types already mentioned.
Three lines grow from one record in the Customer table and
reach out to point at the first, third and fifth records in
the Orders data table. Then, lines grow from the selected
records in the Orders table and reach out to the second,
third, and fifth records in the Salesman data table.
In this case, when any
customer can make any number
of orders with any salesman,
then it is possible for a
many-to-many relationship to
exist between customers and
salesmen. Foreign keys in the
ORDERS table point to either
party's records via their
primary keys in the CUSTOMER
and SALESMAN data tables.
Lines grow from the other records in the Customer table to
point to records in the ORDERS table. Then, lines grow from
the affected records in the ORDERS table to related records
in the Salesman data table. Lines crisscross everywhere.
Also, using SQL makes it easy
to relate these types of data
between tables. This is how
the relational database can
be as simple to use as the
flat database. Even so, it
still retains power of a
network database and its
complex linking features.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 11
GRAPHIC - FOUR STILL PICTURES
Each picture is of people engaged in work activities: an
accountant, a marketing manager, a warehouse manager, and a
No matter what position you
hold or what level you work
at, a computer is sure to be
close at hand.
At the top left, the first picture of an accountant working
with a spreadsheet grows and moves to fill two thirds of
the frame to become a movie.
JOE NARRATOR (V.O.)
Accountants use databases to
store and process all kinds
of business data like income,
wages, depreciation, and
interest. Of course, that
includes costs that can
affect the bottom line.
The picture of the accountant quickly shrinks back to its
previous position. At the top right, the picture of the
marketing manager grows and moves to fill two thirds of the
frame to become a movie. She is giving a talk while
explaining a pie chart on the projection screen.
Then, there are Marketers who
use some of that same data to
predict sales, project
revenues, and to spot
developing trends. This
knowledge can help them boost
the company’s sales.
The picture of the marketing manager shrinks back to its
previous position. At the lower left, the picture of a
warehouse supervisor grows and moves to fill two thirds of
the frame to become a movie. He is on the receiving dock
typing data into a computer terminal from an invoice.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 12
Also, the warehouse manager
must account for every item
of inventory that passes
through his operation. He
must record each item’s
physical condition and
The picture of the warehouse manager shrinks back to its
previous position. At the lower right, the picture of a
researcher grows and moves to fill two thirds of the frame
to become a movie. She is rotating a 3d model wireframe of
a product on a computer screen.
Besides that, there may be
researchers that make use of
a database to track product
tests and how variations in
qualities can affect
important attributes and
The picture of the scientist shrinks back to its previous
These are just a few of the
many careers that are
affected by the relational
database. You cannot avoid
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY
We see a group of people seated around the conference
table. One person is standing up gesturing at a diagram on
a whiteboard and talking to the group.
Relational databases touch
some part of everyone's work
life. Knowing how this
technology works and what it
can do could make a big
difference in your career.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 13
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY (CONTINUED)
We see a young man sitting at the conference table. He is
listening to the speaker and taking notes.
It could determine where you
sit in the corporate
hierarchy - whether you
follow someone else's lead .
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY (CONTINUED)
We see the speaker standing at the white board. The speaker
is pointing and gesturing at the diagram on the white board
as he talks to the group.
. . . or provide the
leadership that your company
needs. Having that knowledge
is what makes the difference.
That difference affects your
work life, income, and
quality of life. In short, it
affects your future.
EXT. AIRPORT RUNWAY AND TERMINAL - DAY
A large 747 approaches the runway for a landing and touches
down. Its wheels smoke as they impact the asphalt.
As the world becomes more of
a global community,
international trade will only
increase. The relational
database will be there to
help track, report on, and
account for each step of
progress along the way.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 14
EXT. A DOCKSIDE SEAPORT - DAY
A large container ship is tied up at the dock. Cranes are
busy lifting containers and moving them to the waiting
Opportunities are everywhere
for those who take advantage
of technological developments
that aid this expansion in
trade. But getting a toe in
the door is not something
that depends on luck. Taking
advantage of this growth
depends on you. Being
prepared is the best way to
GRAPHIC - ATI PROGRAM CURRICULUM
We see a red field with ati's logo centered at the top, and
two titles below it: "Relational Database Technology," and
then below that,"- Curriculum -."
There is no easier way to
prepare for that future than
with ATI's Relational
Database Technology program.
Our curriculum is the most
extensive available. For
instance . . .
GRAPHIC - ATI PROGRAM COURSE HIGHLIGHTS
We see a blue field with the title, "Course Highlights,"
followed by these bullets:
Standard Parts of The Modern Relational Database
Modes of Database Usage in Practice
Top Vendor Database Feature Comparisons
SQL - The ANSI Standard Interface - In Depth
The first bullet becomes reverse highlighted in yellow.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 15
You will study all the
standard parts of the modern
database along with how they
are constructed and function.
The highlight fades from the first bullet as the second
bullet becomes reverse highlighted in yellow.
Over time, various modes of
database usage have developed
like file-server, client-
server, and multi-tier web
systems. You'll learn about
the setup, function, and
advantages of each of these
types of systems.
The highlight fades from the second bullet as the third
bullet becomes reverse highlighted.
Commercial vendors create the
database systems available.
ATI provides comprehensive
coverage and comparison of
the features of the top four
database systems in the
The highlight fades from the third bullet as the fourth
bullet becomes reverse highlighted in yellow.
ATI also covers the
Structured Query Language -
in depth. This includes the
American National Standards
Institute version. Added to
that, vendor specific
exceptions to the A-N-S-I
standard are noted as well.
As the highlight for the fourth bullet fades, the rest of
the group of bullets also fades.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 16
Each of the following bullets appears on screen as the
Narrator speaks of it. These bullets use the same format as
the last list.
SQL Procedural Language Extensions
Common Operational Practices
Privacy And An Security Concerns
Database System Case Histories
But that isn't all. ATI goes
on to provide lectures and
course materials on
extensions to SQL, common
database economics, privacy
and security concerns, and
case histories of actual
GRAPHIC - FALL SEMESTER CALENDAR
We see a picture of a month calendar labeled "Fall
Semester" with the days of the week and calendar dates
arranged in a regular, numbered grid.
The first leaf of the calendar slowly flips up and off to
the left to reveal the leaf below it labeled "Winter
All of this knowledge and the
advantages of knowing about
relational databases can be
yours. All you have to do is
enroll at the start of one of
our three regularly scheduled
The second leaf of the calendar slowly flips up and off to
the left to reveal the leaf below it labeled "Spring
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 17
Once you start classes, you
can start using this
knowledge almost immediately;
and in just three short
months you can complete your
certificate in Relational
The third leaf of the calendar slowly flips up and off to
the left to reveal ATI's "Relational Database Technology,
Certificate of Completion," below it emblazoned with a gold
multi-pointed star and blue, satin ribbon.
ATI provides everything you
need in your quest for this
worthwhile goal. Our programs
are in place and ready to go
when you are.
EXT. ATI OUTDOOR SIGN IN FRONT OF CAMPUS - DAY
INT. ATI CLASSROOM - DAY
We see rows of students sitting at desks and working with
computers while the instructor stands up front explaining
the current lesson.
While studying at ATI, you'll
work with state of the art
equipment. Our classrooms are
fully equipped and staffed.
INT. ATI SERVER ROOM - DAY
We see ATI's well lit, white walled, campus, server room
with equipment racks filled with blade servers, routers,
ups power sources, and other equipment. At a few places
around the room, there are standalone workstations.
One workstation has an instructor pointing to something on
screen as two students, sitting next to her, look on.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 18
In ATI's program, you will
get hands-on experience with
database management systems.
You will get to know what is
required to install, build,
and operate a real system.
INT. ATI INSTRUCTOR'S OFFICE - DAY
The instructor's desk office has the usual desk, chair,
phone, computer workstation, bookcase, and small
A student stands beside the instructor's desk. She is
explaining something about the open folder on the desk. The
instructor looks up from where he is seated and nods with
understanding and approval.
At every step along the way,
you will have access to
You'll be able to reach your
professor by phone, e-mail,
or face-to-face during campus
hours. We're always there to
assist you in your studies.
INT. "STUDY MATERIALS" PHOTO SETUP
We see a plain white field or surface with a seamless
background. The title "Study Materials" is displayed at the
top of frame.
In the order that the Narrator talks about them, books,
manuals, a computer monitor displaying a web tutorial, and
a collection of computer-based-training CDs appear.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 19
Every class is also
accompanied by extensive
course materials. Each course
will use a text book, along
with vendor manuals, web
tutorials, or interactive
computer based training
INT. COURSE COUNSELOR'S OFFICE - DAY
We see THE outer waiting area of the ati student counseling
office. The office has a small couch, and coffee table with
course brochures laid out on its surface.
A young lady is seated on the couch, studying one of the
brochures and turning its pages. One of the counselors
comes out of his office. She stands up and greets the
counselor. They shake hands.
If you get started now, you
can be in the next starting
class. Enrollment has never
been easier. Walk-ins are
always welcome, but . . .
GRAPHIC - ATI CONTACT INFO
We see a blue field with the following ATI logo, course
title, and contact information:
Advanced Technology Institute
123 Xavier Court
Cincinnati, OH, 12345
You can enroll by mail, by
phone, or over the internet.
"The Relational Database Advantage" Page 20
ATI understands the demands
of our modern society, and
makes provisions for those
who have a busy work
Financial assistance is
available to qualifying
students. ATI also welcomes
those with disabilities.
Contact ATI today and get the
next chapter of your life
FADE TO BLACK