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Re: O'Reilly interview with Date

From: Kenneth Downs <knode.wants.this_at_see.sigblock>
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 2005 21:32:13 -0400
Message-Id: <>

David Cressey wrote:

> "Kenneth Downs" <knode.wants.this_at_see.sigblock> wrote in message

>> David  Cressey wrote:
>> >
>> > In this connection,  I want to express a contrarian view about "natural
>> > joins".
>> > I think making joins "natural"  based on common column names is a

> mistake.
>> > It's overloading the column name.
>> > Natural joins sohlud be based on common domain names.  Better yet, 
>> > they should be based on declared REFERENCES constraints (perhaps
>> > unenforced).
>> In my own system I never manually code a join, I just specify the two

> tables
>> and it builds it out of the foreign key definitions.
>> The foreign key definition has a little more going for it than a
>> REFERENCE constraint, because it actually defines the columns in the
>> child table instead of just referencing existing columns.

> Excellent!
> It reminds me a little of Data Architect (DA), where you build a
> conceptual data model (CDM)
> interactively, with a graphic interface. The CDM identifies entities,
> relationships among entities, attributes of entities, domains of
> attributes,
> and maybe a little more. The CDM does NOT include foreign keys.
> Once you are satisfied with a CDM, you can ask DA to build a physical
> data
> model |(PDM). A PDM is DBMS specific.
> You have to choose a product, like Oracle or Ingres. The PDM contains
> tables and columns, among other things. The foreign keys are included.
> Once
> you have a suitable PDM, you can use DA to generate a create script, but
> that's another discussion.

Yeah, Data Architect has been on my list for a long time as a possible candidate GUI that might export files into my format.

> Here's why I like what you wrote better than DA. DA allows me to delegate
> the busy work of tracing references at database creation time, but it
> didn't, as of 5 years ago, let me delegate the same busy work at query
> generation time. (DA may have progressed considerably since I last used
> it).

My impression is that it is a "data modelling" tool, and so it will probably never get completely into the application space. What I was after was complete and total application management.

> Your system appears to link a rich model for database definition with the
> same rich model for query generation. That's what I think is excellent.


> Of
> course, I haven't played with your system. But at least I like the
> description!

Drop me a line at email any time you want to take a look.

Kenneth Downs
Secure Data Software, Inc.
Received on Thu Aug 11 2005 - 20:32:13 CDT

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