Re: Design dilemma I can't get past

From: WebGuyBill <>
Date: 30 Dec 2002 17:26:46 -0800
Message-ID: <>

Thank you both very much for your help. You've steered me in the right direction. I've spent many hours now, immersing myself in nested sets, adjacencies, et al. Now I know why people who do this fulltime are in such demand.

Bill Thompson

Bernard Peek <> wrote in message news:<>...
> In message <>, WebGuyBill
> <> writes
> >Hello -- I'm a self-taught newbie. I appreciate any help you can
> >offer.
> >
> >Using MySQL and PHP I'm designing a database for my website, which is
> >all about books. My database structure is going to wind up being very
> >similar to Amazon (tables for Authors, Titles, graphics, etc).
> >
> >Where I'm having trouble is with Categories (or Genres). Any one book
> >can typically fall into as many as 8-to-10 categories. How best can I
> >relate a specific title (e.g. "Moby Dick") to more than one category
> >(e.g. "Literature > Thrillers > Seafaring" as well as "Animals >
> >Mammals > Whales")?
> You need to make a decision on precisely what you will use the codes
> for. If you intend to use a subject-based filing system like that in a
> non-fiction library then you need to use a single code to tell users
> which shelf the book is on. If you want a simple system then you should
> probably create one for yourself based on the structure of the Dewey
> Decimal system.
> If you intend to use the codes to enable someone to find which titles
> fit into a particular genre then each title has to be coded for every
> genre that any user might use to describe it. The way to implement this
> is a table identifying genres and a link-table to implement the many to
> many relationship between genres and titles.
> If you aren't clear which approach you want to use then I'd suggest
> talking it through with a librarian. If my experience is typical you
> will find that librarians are quite happy to advise you, and will have a
> lot of reference material that you can refer to.
> Don't expect simple answers though, this is a subject area that is still
> evolving after 200 years.
Received on Tue Dec 31 2002 - 02:26:46 CET

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