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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    4

    Exclamation Database design help desperately needed....

    Hi all,

    I apologize if this has been posted before but I am pulling my hair out trying to figure out which database to use...

    Basically I need a database where I can have sub headings under certain data and even sub sub-headings.

    E.g:
    Company 1
    Key Personnel
    Names | Age | Other info |

    I hope I'm making this easy to follow!! but basically I am looking to include 90 companies. Under each company I want to have a list of 30 or so headings (such as revenue, employee size, key personnel). Under some of these I would like to have more sub headings (such as under key personnel, I would have age, names and other info).

    Also I need all of this to be searchable. This is for a research project for a new company I am working for and I am really stumped. I had started using Excel, then Access but I just can't figure out how to what I want.

    If anyone knows of tutorial video I could watch, or which is the best DB to use I would really appreciate the help.

    Thanks everyone in advance,

    John

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    221B Baker St.
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    487
    Hopefully, you realize you have posted in a very specific part of the forum - for one specific product.

    You will maybe get some useful replies if you re-post in the Database Concepts & Design or Applications & Tools parts of the forum.

    Possibly our friendly moderator will relocate this post.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    4
    Oh, sorry about that. I can try and move it.

    Thanks for the help

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    In front of the computer
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    14,910
    I've moved the thread to the database design forum for you (moving it requires Moderation privileges). I suspect that's the best place for this kind of question, although that's certainly subject to debate.

    Excel is a great spreadsheet, but it is a pretty poor database. Excel can do trivial database manipulation, but any material degree of database complexity will baffle it (as you've discovered).

    Almost any of the database products will do what you've described so far. The problem is that you're trying to eat a decent sized meal in one mouthfull... A messy proposition!

    Break your problem down into smaller parts to make it easier to handle. That will make it much easier for you to learn too.

    I'd recommend that you take about an hour to read up on the process of Database Normalization. You don't need to be an expert, but understanding the basics will help make this process a lot simpler. I strongly recommend Marc Rettig's Normalization Poster for a great, quick overview of the concepts.

    For what you've described so far I think you need three tables. Those are: Companies, People, and Tenures. Companies and people seem pretty self-evident to me. Tenures are a bit more complex, but they describe the relationship between a person and a company and would include details like the position the person held and the dates that the relationship started and ended. You'll often find that people will transition from one position to another within a company or even between companies, and will sometimes hold more than one position at a time.

    -PatP
    In theory, theory and practice are identical. In practice, theory and practice are unrelated.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    4

    Question

    Thanks for the detailed response Pat!!

    I have looked up about data normalization but I'm getting a little confused. I have tried that in Access but is it possible to contain all of the information on one table (possibly expandable).

    Also under each company there will be 30+ headings with up to 10 more headings under some of these so it would seem that I would need to have a lot of tables.

    I have spent almost two weeks now trying to find something and I am starting to think that what I'm looking for doesn't exist or else that I'm very stupid.

    I can pay for a program if thats easier but I can't even find a program to do that!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    221B Baker St.
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    487
    so it would seem that I would need to have a lot of tables.
    Quite possibly.

    Something that may help is if you detail what you want to get from this when it is running. Think of which screens, reports, etc and once you have these laid out, you can look at the data you have available and determine how to organize it (i.e. db design).

    Consider where each bit of data is now and how it will be migrated/converted to your new application.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    out on a limb
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    if you are just starting out then besides other great books / references these shoudl give ou a good grounding
    Fundamentals of Relational Database Design -- r937.com
    The Relational Data Model, Normalisation and effective Database Design

    just becuase a tool 'lets' you do soemthging doesnt' mean you should do it.

    for you hierarchy problme look at a self referencing table
    https://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&scli...w=1920&bih=995

    if you need more than 5..10 layers then consider redesiging the the table into sub tables.
    I'd rather be riding on the Tiger 800 or the Norton

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    2,815
    Quote Originally Posted by healdem View Post
    for you hierarchy problme look at a self referencing table

    if you need more than 5..10 layers then consider redesiging the the table into sub tables.
    Why would you need to re-design if you have more levels in the hierarchy? Modern DBMS can easily do recursive queries using a self referencing table (adjacency model) regardlesse of the number of levels in the hierarchy.
    I will not read nor answer questions where the SQL code is messy and not formatted properly using [code] tags: http://www.dbforums.com/misc.php?do=bbcode#code

    Tips for good questions:

    http://tkyte.blogspot.de/2005/06/how...questions.html
    http://wiki.postgresql.org/wiki/SlowQueryQuestions
    http://catb.org/esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

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