Relational databases are one of the most commonly used forms of data storage, and they are the foundation of many modern applications. They are known for their ability to store data in a structured and organized way, making it easy to manage and retrieve information. In this chapter, we will give an overview of relational databases, introduce the popular open-source database management system, MySQL, and also take a look at BigQuery, a cloud-based relational database solution.
The relational model
Relational databases are based on the relational model, which was first introduced by E.F. Codd in 1970. The relational model consists of tables that store data in a structured manner, with each table representing a single entity or object. The tables are related to each other through relationships, which are represented as columns in one table that correspond to the primary key of another table.
Benefits of relational databasesOne of the benefits of relational databases is that they allow for data to be separated into different tables, reducing redundancy and making it easier to manage and maintain data over time. Another advantage is that they provide a flexible and scalable way to store data, making it possible to grow the database as needed to accommodate changing requirements.
MySQL is one of the most popular relational database management systems in use today. It was originally released in 1995 and has since grown to become one of the most widely used databases for web-based applications. MySQL is open-source software, which means that it is free to use and can be customized to meet the specific needs of a project. It is also highly scalable, making it a good choice for applications that are expected to grow over time.
BigQuery is a cloud-based relational database solution that provides a scalable and cost-effective way to store and process large amounts of data. It is part of the Google Cloud Platform and is designed to handle big data use cases, such as data warehousing and real-time analytics. Unlike traditional relational databases, BigQuery operates on a serverless architecture, meaning that users only pay for the resources they consume and don’t have to worry about provisioning or managing servers.
Relational databases provide a flexible and scalable way to store data, and both MySQL and BigQuery offer solutions for different use cases. MySQL is a popular open-source database management system, while BigQuery provides a cloud-based, serverless solution for big data. In the next chapter, we will dive into the basics of SQL, the language used to interact with relational databases. Stay tuned!
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