UNIT 10 - SPATIAL DATABASES AS MODELS OF REALITY

UNIT 10 - SPATIAL DATABASES AS MODELS OF REALITY

Compiled with assistance from Timothy L. Nyerges, University of Washington

  • A. INTRODUCTION
  • B. DATABASE CONTENT AND AN ORGANIZATION'S MISSION
  • C. FUNDAMENTAL DATABASE ELEMENTS
  • D. DATABASE DESIGN
  • REFERENCES
  • EXAM AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
  • NOTES

    This begins a three unit section covering some basic principles of spatial databases. As these issues are very fundamental, many of them are introduced here but dealt with in much greater detail in later units.

    UNIT 10 - SPATIAL DATABASES AS MODELS OF REALITY

    Compiled with assistance from Timothy L. Nyerges, University of Washington

    A. INTRODUCTION

    Definition

    Standards

    B. DATABASE CONTENT AND AN ORGANIZATION'S MISSION

    Organization mandates

    Database contents

    Database design

    C. FUNDAMENTAL DATABASE ELEMENTS

    Entity

    Object

    Entity types

    Spatial object type

    Object classes

    Attributes

    Attribute value

    Database model

    Layers

    D. DATABASE DESIGN

    Steps in database design

    Desirable database characteristics

    Issues in database design

    REFERENCES

    Codd, E. F., 1981. "Data Models in Database Management," ACM SIGMOD Record 11(2):112-114. Explains the nature of data models, their role in constructing databases.

    DCDSTF - Digital Cartographic Data Standards Task Force. 1988. "The proposed standard for digital cartographic data," The American Cartographer 15(1). Summary of the major components of the proposed US National Standard.

    Robinson, A., R. Sale, J. Morrison, and P. Muehrcke, 1984. The Elements of Cartography, (5th ed.), John Wiley and Sons, New York. Useful survey of cartographic terminology and models.

    Unwin D., 1981. Introductory Spatial Analysis, Methuen, London. A spatial analysis perspective on spatial data models.

    EXAM AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

    1. What makes the concept of a spatial database unique relative to other types of databases?

    2. Distinguish the construct of an entity from a spatial object.

    3. Why are organizational mandates important in database design? Give examples using (a) natural resource data and (b) socio-economic data.

    4. What is a database model, and why is it important for designing a database?

    5. Why would a database designer use a chain object rather than a string object for representation of linear features?

    6. List and define an example of a spatial object type from each of the 0-D, 1-D, 2-D and 3-D groups of object types.


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