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18/04/2011 u01d3 - Data Redundancy

u01d3 - Data Redundancy: Search


Data Redundancy is a condition that exists when a data environment contains unnecessarily
duplicated data. Data Redundancy is the bane of DBMS development and management as it
wastes resources.

Relate where data redundancy might creep into a small business DBMS. Write 2 - 3 cited short
paragraphs as an initial statement. Copy and paste your complete initial statement into the U01d3
by Sunday. Include at least two outside study references in APA format.

Response Guidelines

Read and upload quality comments on at least two other learner statements before the end of the
week.

Resources

Discussion Participation Scoring Guide.

u01d3 - Data Redundancy


The redundancy of data in a database is primarily referred to in a negative sense, as it pertains to the unnecessary
duplication of data in a database. However, there are certain times when redundant data is either required, or
desirable - based upon specific and unique conditions.

Unnecessary data can occur when an organization stores several copies of similar information about the same
data in multiple departments within an organization (ie; Sales, Support, and Marketing) maintaining their "own"
customer databases (ie; SALES_CUST, SUPPORT_CUST, and MARKETING_CUST). It can also occur if
repeatable data types are contained within repeating fields, and not segregated into their own tables and related
by a unique ID key (ie; ID_CUST, or CUST_ID).

A very good example of the inefficiency of unnecessary duplicate data would be in the use of layout components
just within a database system itself. For instance, if there are multiple (report) layouts that incorporate common
elements such as logos, company address information, phone numbers, URL, etc., it becomes a monumental task
to consistently update every layout to reflect such changes. Even a change to the color schemes used on the
layouts is an arduous task. Storing such elements in a "front-end" database makes the editing of such layout
components a global operation, eliminating the need for such wasted time and excess of storage space within the
database.

Cascading Stylesheets incorporate these much-admired and highly-regarded principles of separating the data
(content) from the presentation (layout).

Reasons against most types of unnecessary duplicate data:

Change requires reconciling data in multiple locations or fields in the database


Wastes physical storage space
Can decrease performance, accuracy, reliability, and stability
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18/04/2011 u01d3 - Data Redundancy
Introduces maintenance issues
Increases difficulty of troubleshooting database problems
Data redundancy results in data inconsistency, or a lack of data integrity.
- Different and conflicting versions of the same data appear in different places
Errors more likely to occur when complex entries are made in several different files and/or recur frequently
in one or more files
Data anomalies develop when required reconciliations in redundant data are not made successfully

Reasons and types of certain necessary duplicate data:

Ensure "static" data for required situations (government-compliant accounting, banking, and financial
record-keeping systems, Capella assignment attachments, etc.)
Information that is "locked" into historical records of quotations, orders, invoices, and receipts after initial
lookups via character keys.
Client memory constraints
Improve the ease and speed of access to data, with the risk that changes may cause conflicting values

Types of data anomalies:

Update anomalies
- Occur when changes must be made to existing records
Insertion anomalies
- Occur when entering new records
Deletion anomalies
- Occur when deleting records

Problems inherent in file systems make using a database system desirable:


File system
- Many separate and unrelated files
- Independent files tend to contain unnecessary duplicate data
Database
- Logically related data stored in a single logical data repository

References

Rob, P., Coronel, C. (2006). Chapter 01 [PowerPoint slides 37-39]. In, Database Systems: Design,
Implementation, & Management, 7th Edition. Thompson Course Technology, Boston.

databasedev.co.uk (2003-2006). Data Redundancy Defined - Relational Database Design. In, Database
Solutions for Microsoft Access, Retrieved October 10th, 2006, from: http://www.databasedev.co.uk/data-
redundancy.html

Gross, M. (2004, July 20). Beating Data Redundancy With Content Reuse. In Data Conversion Laboratory.
macdesign.net/…/u01d3-data_redundan… 2/3
18/04/2011 u01d3 - Data Redundancy
Retrieved October 10th, 2006, from:
http://www.dclab.com/contentreuse.asp

Department of Geography, University of British Columbia (1999, September 2). GIS Glossary. Retrieved
October 10th, 2006, from:
http://www.geog.ubc.ca/courses/klink/gis.notes/glossary.html

Hong, S. (1994, March). A Method for Analyzing and Reducing Data Redundancy in Object-Oriented
Databases (p.1) . In, Department of Computer Information Systems, Georgia State University. Retrieved
October 10th, 2006, from:
http://citeseer.ist.psu.edu/hong94method.html

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