Chapter 8. Designing Databases to Support Software Applications

The previous chapters showed how to gather user requirements, build a database model, and normalize the database to improve its performance and robustness. Those chapters showed how to look at the database from the customers' perspective, from the end user's perspective, and from a database normalization perspective, but there's one other point of view that you should consider before you open your database product and start slapping tables together: the programmer's.

You may not be responsible for writing a program to work with a database. The database may not ever directly interact with a program (although that's rare). In any case, the techniques that you would use to make a database easier for a program to use often apply to other situations. Learning how to help a database support software applications can make the database easier to use in general.

In this chapter you learn:

  • Steps you can take to make the database more efficient in practical use.

  • Methods for making validation easier in the user interface.

  • Ways to easily manage non-searchable data.

This chapter describes several things that you can do to make the database more program-friendly.

A few of these ideas (such as multi-tier architecture) have been covered in earlier chapters. They are repeated in brief here to tie them together with other programming-related topics, but you should refer to the original chapters for more detailed information.

Plan Ahead

Any complicated ...

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