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Relational Databases Alex Wood Why Relational Databases? Originally, Databases Were Stored as “Flat Files” Flat Files Are Very Poor at Handling Queries Breaking Data into Relational Models: Increases Flexibility Improves Query Performance Uses Less Space (Avoiding Excessive “NULL” Fields) Flat Files Are Evil Number, Name, Position, Age, Flat File DBs are OK College|27, Jordan Babineaux, SS, 27, Southern Arkansas|83, for Storage of Data Deion Branch, WR, 30, Unlikely to Be Louisville|79, Red Bryant, DT, 25, Texas A&M|81, Nate Significantly Modified Burleson, WR, 28, Nevada|11, Adding New Columns Deon Butler, WR, 23, Penn State|89, John Carlson, TE, 25, is Difficult Notre Dame|59, Aaron Curry, LB, How Do You Model a 23, Wake Forest List of an Author's Books in a Flat DB? A Few Tables A Few Tables How do we model relationships? Relation Tables Using only shared keys, facilitates easy linking of tables in queries. Allows for modular data storage. Can add attributes to further describe relation. Deriving Interesting Information How many students from a given school does a company hire? What percent of employees come from that school? What is the average commute distance of a company's employees? Our Project The CTPP Project involves storing game state and game results for an educational video game. We are able to leverage Relational Databases to efficiently store game data, and build queries to obtain interesting information for post-game analysis. Dealing with changing requirements for stored data is a manageable obstacle with this implementation. Questions?
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