The Relational Model

As we being our foray into the world of database systems, our first stop is at the Relational Model of Data.  In the relational model, some of the basic components are tuples, relations, and relationships.  It was originally developed and proposed in the late 60’s by E. F. Codd.  Perhaps one of the most influential papers related to the relational model is Codd’s “A Relational Model of Data for Large Shared Data Banks“.

Here are some of the topics we will cover right now:

  • What’s a data model and why are models important?
  • Major components of the relational model and their theoretical basis.
  • Introductory relational algebra, including the following operators:
    • Select
    • Project
    • Join
  • Expressing and interpreting Relational Algebra Queries

You should read and understand the following:

  • Chapter 2 – Introducing Relational Theory from Allen & Terry. Beginning Relational Data Modeling. Apress, 2005.  This book is available through the SMU Library as a PDF from the SpringerLink Repository.
  • IBM Data Magazine’s “Why You Can’t Afford Not to Have a Data Model” (pub Oct 9, 2012).

Some good reference material:


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