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Building the Database Used for the Demo

Even in a moderate-sized company, a good use for a company intranet is to create a company directory. If you are handing out internal phone lists on paper, you are paying for updating, printing, and operator services. If you keep the company directory on an intranet, distribution is eliminated and maintenance can actually be delegated to individuals—at least, it can be done in just a few simple steps.

NOTE

Any internal information that must be maintained and published for small to midsized companies can be managed easily on an intranet. This includes directories, company policy, training materials, requests for vacation days, corporate news bulletins, and anything that might be important to the successful operation of the business.

Therefore, because it is practical and it fits into the time allowed, the examples in this hour are based on a company directory.

NOTE

Schema is a broad term that refers to all the things that define a database, including tables, fields, indexes, views, queries, stored procedures, and other database objects.

The virtual company is eSoft, a company that specializes in custom software development. The personnel database for eSoft contains three tables: DEPARTMENT, EMPLOYEE, and ROLES. The schema for the eSoft's directory is contained in Tables 1, 2, and 3.

Table 1 The DEPARTMENT Table Contains the Names of the Departments for eSoft

Field Name

Type

Size

Indexed

DEPARTMENT_ID

AutoNumber

 

Primary Key

NAME

Text

50

 

Table 2 The ROLES Table Contains the Job Descriptions for eSoft

Field Name

Type

Size

Indexed

ROLE_ID

AutoNumber

 

PrimaryKey

NAME

Text

20

 

DESCRIPTION

Text

50

 

Table 3 The Main Table Is the EMPLOYEE Table, Which Contains Employee Data for eSoft

Field Name

Type

Size

Indexed

EMPLOYEE_ID

AutoNumber

 

Primary Key

FIRST_NAME

Text

20

 

LAST_NAME

Text

20

 

SSN

Text

11

 

DEPARTMENT_ID

Number

 

Yes (duplicates OK)

PHONE_NUMBER

Text

14

 

EXTENSION

Text

6

 

ROLE_ID

Number

 

Yes (duplicates OK)

Logically, the main table is the EMPLOYEE table. The relationship between EMPLOYEE and DEPARTMENT is that, for each department, there are many employees, linked by the DEPARTMENT_ID. The relationship between the ROLES and EMPLOYEE tables is that, for each role, there are zero-to-many employees, linked by the ROLE_ID. (Everyone is assigned to a department, but not everyone has a defined role.)

To complete the examples in the rest of this hour, you must create the eSoft database as described in the preceding section. I will proceed by demonstrating how easy it is to use the wizards to create a data access page.

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