What would you do if you were presented with an unfamiliar database and no documentation?
When you have completed this course you will be able to answer this question. You will have a plan, a method and several techniques you can use. This course is for:
You will learn how to find your way around a database quickly and efficiently. You can become the “go to” person in your specialisation simply by being able to “read a database like a book”. You become the person with the map, or the book of instructions!
I wrote this course as an extended tutorial. I started with one of Microsoft’s example databases and documented the method I use as I went through it. Although I used SQL Server and the associated tools, the method is applicable to most SQL databases. We will go through the same journey together and you will learn what I discovered along the way. You can choose to repeat what I do yourself to gain experience with the technique, or you can choose simply to observe.
Come along! Sign up! There are some surprises and a lot of fun to be had!
When you have completed this lecture you will know:
When you have completed this lecture you will know a little more about me, my background and why I am qualified to teach this course.
This lecture introduces the DOGI method which we will use through the rest of the course.
What have you learned about the structure of the course, the DOGI method and the I_START techniques?
When you have completed this lecture you will have seen how to create a physical database diagram using SSMS (SQL Server Management Studio).
How much do you remember about creating database diagrams?
The first stage of Organising a diagram is to make the tables flow “Top to Bottom” by arranging them so that the “one” end of 1-to-many relationships is towards the top, and the “many” end is towards the bottom
The next stage of Organising a diagram is to adjust the positions off the tables, recognising the role of each table according to “layers” rules. The result can be recognised by “Volkswagen”!
Table positions can also be adjusted using the idea of “Affinity” where tables which participate in related processes are moved closer together.
In this lecture you will learn how to recognise groups or clusters of tables in the organised diagram.
When you have completed this lecture you know how to enhance your diagram with notations and how to export the diagram for use in presentations and other documentation.
How much do you remember about Organising your diagram?
This lecture provides an overview of this section.
This lecture explores the Customer Address group and you will learn why a Customer is allowed to have more than one address and how this is reflected in the database.
What is going on with the numbers of Customers and Addresses? Can we get any guidance from the database and the data? This lecture shows you how to get answers using simple SQL.
This lecture introduces the Product group. We will focus particularly on Product, Product Model and Product Category and you will learn what each of these different tables contributes.
How much have you learned about working with groups of tables?
In this lecture well look at the Customer Address group in much more detail. When you have completed this lecture:
In this lecture we'll look inside the tables Sales Order Header and Sales Order Detail. When you have completed this lecture:
In this lecture we will look in detail at the Product table. When you have completed this lecture, you will have learned that:
Test how much you remember from the lectures about investigating the tables inside the various groups.
In this lecture we will look “schemas” and how they are used. You will learn:
See what you have learned about schemas
When you have completed this lecture you will understand what State Transition Diagrams are and how they can be used.
When you have completes this lecture you will have:
This course has covered a lot of ground in a short time.
At the end of this lecture you will have considered what you want to do next to consolidate what you have learned and what new subjects you want to explore next
I'm Tom Gillies and I have been a Business and Technical Analyst in the Information Technology industry for the past thirty years.
My courses are based on my real-world experiences. I am teaching as I wish I had been taught. My objective is to give you enough knowledge to make you reasonably self-sufficient, and enough experience to give you reasonable confidence, while understanding your limitations. I think you will find working at your own pace liberating and you can contact me during the course if you wish to.
I started my working life as an engineer. I have a BSc in Chemical Engineering from Aston University in Birmingham, England. As a result of my work as an engineering designer, I became interested in computing and eventually I joined IBM as a Systems Engineer, working in pre-sales for customers in the aerospace industry.
Within IBM, I moved to a consultancy group and worked directly for customers as a Business or Technical Analyst for twenty-five years. I served a wide variety of customers from large “blue chip" corporations and government departments to start-ups. I have designed, developed and maintained computer systems, large and small, on a wide variety of platforms.
In my experience of the Information Technology industry, I have found that some skills have been of lasting value. SQL is one such technical skill. Problem solving, some analysis techniques and the so-called "soft skills" are others. All of these improve your ability to communicate with both the business and technical staff make you a more valuable member of a team.
I live in the Republic of Ireland and, when I'm not working for Customers, or writing and supporting courses, I am improving my skill in the Russian language.