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  • Create a logical data model?

    You are a data modeler creating the design for a non-relational database. “Non-relational” means the underlying database does not follow relational database theory – for instance the database could be hierarchical or object oriented. It is even possible that the underlying structure will be a set...

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    Steve Hoberman
  • Convincing project teams of the need to normalize

    In our last design challenge we agreed that we should normalize regardless of database platform, and we discussed a number of benefits the normalized design can offer. Some of these benefits are longer term and have broader scope than the current project to which you are...

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    Steve Hoberman
  • Techniques in reviewing a data model

    There are a number of techniques I apply when I review a data model. Using these techniques over the years helped me quickly summarize models and look for ways to improve them. Many times the 80/20 rule seems to prevail when reviewing a model. That is,...

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    Steve Hoberman
  • Technical questions asked during a job interview for a data-related position

    I was very recently teaching a data modeling course and decided to make the normalization section a bit more interactive by asking the group to normalize a business card. Sound easy? (Actually there are lots of neat design challenges hiding in this simple exercise!). This exercise...

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    Steve Hoberman
  • Taming the wild west modeler

    When I tell folks about these design challenges, I sometimes receive comments like “So you get other people to solve your problems?”. I laugh when I hear these comments, but for this particular design challenge there is some truth to this statement. This design challenge comes...

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    Steve Hoberman