Chapter 8 Introduction
"Man is a slow, sloppy, and brilliant thinker; the machine is fast, accurate, and stupid." (William M. Kelly)
Man is ingenious. Only by instructing a database properly will it perform well.
Much of the information in this chapter has already been discussed, perhaps even analyzed, and often alluded to, in previous chapters of this book. This chapter is intended to take everything you have learned so far (all the theory) and begin the process of putting it into practice. This chapter describes various factors affecting database performance tuning, as applied to different database model types. Anything obviously repeated from a previous chapter should be considered as being doubly significant, with respect to database modeling. Database performance is the most important factor as far as any database or database model is concerned. If performance is not acceptable, your database model does not service the end-users in an acceptable manner. End-users are your clients and thus the most important people in your life -- at least as far as your database is concerned.
A client can be a direct customer or an indirect customer. An indirect client could be someone else's customer -- your customer's client.
This chapter forms a bridge between database modeling and related theoretical concepts described in the previous chapters, and a large ongoing case study in chapters to follow this chapter. The following chapters dig into the practical aspects of database modeling by describing and demonstrating the full process of thinking about, analyzing, designing and building a database model in a real world environment. By the end of this chapter, you should have a slightly less theoretical and slightly more real-world picture of database modeling techniques.
Chapter 8 Excerpts
- The needs of different database models
- Understanding database model tuning
- Writing efficient queries
- The SELECT command
- Filtering with the WHERE clause
- The HAVING and WHERE clauses
- Auto counters
- Efficient indexing for performance
- How to apply indexes in the real world
- When not to use indexes
- Using views
- Application caching
- Database modeling exercises
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This was first published in April 2006