The following workshop is composed of quiz questions and practical exercises. The quiz questions are designed to test your overall understanding of the current material. The practical exercises are intended to afford you the opportunity to apply the concepts discussed during the current hour, as well as build on the knowledge acquired in previous hours of study. Please take time to complete this workshop before continuing. You can refer to the answers at the end of the hour.
Databases are used only in transactions you complete on the PC and on the Internet. (True or False)
A simple transaction such as getting a prescription filled probably requires, when you consider several layers of the transaction, how much data storage?
Every transaction will have a unique set of database requirements. (True or False)
A database is best used to support which type of data? Choose all that apply.
Static current data
Dynamic current data
Static historical data
Dynamic historical data
When particular records or rows from the database are needed, what is used to retrieve them?
Find five databases you can search on the Internet.
You will probably visit a retailer, such as Wal-Mart, K-Mart or a grocery store, within the next few days. Identify two or three databases that are in use when you go through the checkout.
Answers to Quiz
False. Databases are used in almost every transaction that you conduct. Everything from buying milk at the grocery, to checking out a book at the library, to getting your car serviced requires the use of many different databases at several layers of the transaction.
d. When you take into consideration all the different layers within the supply chain, the answer is probably much greater than 500 megabytes.
False. Many of the examples had a customer database with name, address, city, state, and zip. There are many similarities in the database requirements in the examples presented in this hour and in most transactions that you conduct daily.
a, b, and c. A database can support current data, both static in nature, such as customer name and address, and dynamic in nature, such as inventory on hand values that may change from minute to minute. A database, usually referred to as a data warehouse, is a good example of static historical data. Dynamic historical data cannot exist; dynamic and historical would be, by definition, mutually exclusive events.
c. ATM stands for automated teller machine. NDC stands for National Drug Code. ACH stands for Automated Clearinghouse. Answer c, SQL, stands for Structured Query Language, which is the standard for retrieving data from a relational database.
Answers to Exercises
If you start your browser at Yahoo and do a search on "databases" you get 7,691 hits! Film, software, the U.S. Patent Office, medical, and movies are five that appear on the first page.
The one that is most obvious is when the cashier scans your item. A database is used, by UPC (Universal Product Code), that uniquely identifies every item. The record is retrieved to determine the current retail price.
A second database is in use that captures the UPC and quantities of every sale and is used as a point-of-sale inventory replenishment system. This database is used to automatically generate orders to the retailer's distribution center to refill the shelves.
A third database may be in use if you are going to pay with check or credit card. Your checking account must be checked against a master database to ensure that you do not have any checks outstanding that have been returned for NSF (non-sufficient funds). It will also check against a database that adds the dollar amount of checks you have written within any 24-hour period. Limitations are established that require a manager's approval, as a "stop loss" measure in the event someone is trying to pass bogus checks.