Relating to the Database
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Relating to the Database

A no-nonsense introduction to relational databases with PostgreSQL

About the Book

This book is intended as a first introduction to relational databases or for those who have a little experience to review the fundamentals of data modeling and SQL.  It may be suitable as a textbook for a university course.  In particular, it may be a good supplement for one of those overpriced, theory-heavy textbooks that universities like to assign.  Due to its low price and its focus on practical data modeling patterns, students may use this book for additional practice and self-study.

Also, as far as I know, it's the only such textbook to use PostgreSQL as the database of choice for examples.  PostgreSQL or "Postgres" is an increasingly popular, free and open source database that runs on all the major platforms (Windows, Mac OS, Linux), making it a great choice for the classroom or independent learner.

I would appreciate feedback on this draft!  Feel free to read the manuscript online for free and leave comments.

About the Author

Joseph Clark
Joseph Clark

Joseph W. Clark, Ph.D. has researched and taught information systems and data analytics topics since 2006, most recently at the University of Maine. He was one of the first generation of Web developers in the 1990s, and has been fascinated with databases and data modeling since he first learned how relational databases could power dynamic websites, around 1999. His academic interests lately have been at the intersection of data analytics and entrepreneurship, and new types of workflows such as Agile, Lean, and Design Thinking. His most ambitious project yet is raising four children with his beautiful wife, Xiaofang.

Table of Contents

  • About this book
    • An open-source book
    • Companion videos
    • Structure of chapters
    • Case studies
    • How to use the book
    • Instructors
  • Using Docker to install and run PostgreSQL
  • Chapter 1: Introducing databases and PostgreSQL
    • How databases fit in
    • Lab 1: your first PostgreSQL database
    • Summary
    • Challenges
  • Chapter 2: The Relational Model
    • There are other data models
    • Theoretical roots
    • A relational database is a database of relations
    • Lab 2: Creating and querying a relational database
    • Summary
    • Summary
    • Challenges
  • Chapter 3: Querying the data
    • A declarative query language
    • Relational operations
    • Queries within queries
    • Lab
  • Normalizing a data model
  • More relational patterns
  • Logic in the database
  • Advanced PostgreSQL tricks
  • Just enough physical database design
  • Dimensional modeling for analytics
  • Databases in the cloud
  • Appendix A: Installing PostgreSQL and accessing it from the command line
    • Setting up PostgreSQL in Windows 10
    • Setting up PostgreSQL on a Mac
    • Setting up PostgreSQL in Linux
  • About the Author

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