Database management is a method of managing the information that is used to support a company’s business operations. It includes data storage and distribution to applications and users making changes as needed, monitoring changes in the data and preventing it from getting damaged due to unexpected failure. It is a part of a company’s total informational infrastructure, which supports decision-making and corporate growth, as well as compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.
The first database systems were invented in the 1960s by Charles Bachman, IBM and others. They evolved into information management systems (IMS) which made it possible to store and retrieve large amounts data for a broad range of uses, from calculating inventory to supporting complicated human resources and financial accounting functions.
A database is a set of tables that arrange data according to some scheme, such as one-to-many relationships. It makes use of primary keys to identify records and allows cross-references between tables. Each table has a set of attributes, or fields, which provide information about data entities. Relational models, invented by E. F. “Ted” Codd in the 1970s at IBM, are the most well-known database type today. This design is based on normalizing data to make it more user-friendly. It also makes it easier to update data, avoiding the need to update various databases.
Most DBMSs can support multiple database types by providing different levels of internal and external organization. The internal level addresses costs, scalability, and other operational concerns, such as the layout of the physical storage. The external level is the representation of the database on user interfaces and applications. It can include a combination of various external views (based on the various data models) and can also include virtual tables which are generated using generic data to improve performance.
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