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Applied Mathematics for Database Professionals

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This book is about the mathematical foundation of relational databases; it demonstrates how logic and set theory can be used as tools to formally specify database designs, including the data integrity constraints (a main topic of this book). Don't let this scare you of; the book explains the required mathematical concepts with many examples and should be accessible for the regular database professional. It does assume that you are familiar with designing a database.

You'll find three parts in this book:

  • Part 1 provides the mathematics. It covers those parts of logic and set theory that are both necessary and sufficient to formally specify database designs and their constraints.
  • Part 2 demonstrates the application of these subjects. It gradually develops the formal specification of a ten-table database design that includes over seventy data integrity constraints. You'll also find a treatment of formal query and transaction specification in this part.
  • Part 3 is the Oracle specific part. You'll discover that due to poor support of declarative constraints, implementing these in today's SQL DBMS's still poses quite a few challenges. It demonstrates a method—based on database triggers—to implement (multi-row) constraints procedurally. This method has evolved for over 12 years; it is an efficient one and one that cannot be subverted.

It is important to understand the mathematical foundation of our database profession. The knowledge contained in this book will, in the end, enable you to better design and implement databases