Re: Multiple-Attribute Keys and 1NF

From: David Cressey <>
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2007 05:10:40 GMT
Message-ID: <kd7Bi.868$CO5.480_at_trndny01>

"JOG" <> wrote in message

> Okay, sure. But then to be able to query for green and yellow
> individually one must employ a further relation encoding two more
> propositions that state "'Green and yellow' contains 'Green'" and that
> "'Green and yellow' contains 'Yellow'" respectively. One then has a
> schema with two domains - one for the composites and one for
> individual colours (which is what I was inferring when I initially
> said a new one was being added).

It took me a while to realize that what you meant from your original description was that
"a green and yellow wire means earth". I had thought you meant "a green wire means earth" and "a yellow wire means earth". Pardon me for being

Clearly what we have here is not a domain of colors, but a domain of color codes, where a color code contains one or more colors, and maybe a "thick or thin" qualifier on each color.

It's not clear to me why you need to able to query on simple colors, unless you need to decompose the color coding scheme into its constituent parts for some reason.

There are lot of code domains where each code is made up of a set of more primitive elements.
Perhaps a very relevant one might be "character code". If I have the following primitive elements:

B1, B2, B4, B8, B16, B32, B64, B128
(which might be an odd way of labelling bits 0 through 7 of a byte), I can think of the character code for 'A' as being B64+B1. Now I could query on all the character codes without necessarily having an operator that would yield "all the codes that include B1".

I think that the colors, as constituents of color codes, play the same role as bits, as constituents of character codes. Do you agree? Received on Wed Aug 29 2007 - 07:10:40 CEST

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