What is a Database?

PUBLISHED Nov 22nd, 2018

Well what is Data? It is simply a piece of information. Like your phone number. And database, it’s an organized collection of lot of data. Like a phonebook.

What is a Database?

Just like an army base or Marine Base, the headquarters where the different inventory is stored, Database is just like that. It’s the base for storing Data.

Not only for the digital world, database can be refered to anything which refers to an organized collection of data.

The key here is to that the data has to be organized in away that it can be modified and accessed in a specific manner with the exact manner of identifying the required set of information.

The above para seems too technical.

Let’s learn in a simple way. The ordered collection of all the office files full of finance reports is a database. A dictionary can also be said one.

Why database play a very important role in the world of computers? See, computers all about information. It is the information technology at first hand. So how is that information is kept and handled is important. Database is the soul of what is Facebook or Google want to provide. At they end, they have huge data centers which are storing huge information about us, about the things on the internet, and help us to find what we want.

Studying database therefore becomes necessary because the data computers are handling are too much. That’s why scientists and engineers are developing new technics and modals to make database handling more efficient and productive.

Let us understand the importance of database with a very simple example. Suppose you want to collect data as follows.

Name of the person
Their Birth Date
Their residential city

And now there are millions of people, each having their names, date of birth and city. A millions of records to keep.

Now another issue here will be there can be two people having same name. There can be many people sharing same birth date or city. How will you handle that information?

After building a complete database of huge record set, we need various ways to access information.

Suppose from the above data, we can have information such as, you want to wish happy birthday to all the people born on 22 November. (coz you are president…)

Then with database you can do something like that.

ALL people WHOSE birth_date = "24/11"

And you get a list of people and their names.

(that’ a pseudo database language just to help you understand)

Suppose you just moved in a new city. Say Tokyo. And you want to find all the people around your age who are living in the same city to hang out with.

ALL people WHOSE birth_date greater than "1/1/1997" WHOSE city = "Tokyo"

You want to find average age of people living in New York?

Average (TODAY - birth_date) WHOSE city = "New York"

Isn’t that something like Facebook? Yes because that is what Facebook is doing. But in a very efficient way.

The above examples might have helped you understand the meaning and importance of a database. Stay connected to learn more about Database!

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© Shubham Ramdeo, 2020
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