IDS 521 – Advanced Database Management
Web-Enabled Database Application
Assigned Date: August 27, 2011
Deliverables Due Dates: see pages 5-6
Note: If you have in mind a web-enabled database application project, I encourage you to
propose your own project and work on it instead of working on the default project, which is
described at length in this document. For this term project, students will form groups of up to
four students per group. Each student may opt to do the project alone. Groups must be formed
by the end of the second week.
With a majority vote, a free rider can be dismissed from a group
by the fourth week. The dismissed student can in turn join another group, if this is acceptable to
that other group, or do the project alone.
In the project report, each group member should
specify the percentage of contribution he or she made to this project.
The advances in digital technology and the Internet open an opportunity for those in the music,
films, TV Shows, books, journal articles, and several other industries to offer their digital
products online for download.
In this paradigm, their product offerings are produced digitally,
duplicated infinitely almost at no cost, and then distributed as well as transacted rapidly via the
Internet. On the supply side, the use of the Internet and digital technology allows a significant
reduction in the marginal costs of production and distribution of digital products. On the demand
side, offering digital products online allows customers to instantly get just the products they
want, at their convenience, and on demand.
The demand for digital products for download is huge and increasing from year to year. For
examples, in the music industry, the digital music revenue worldwide in 2003 was only US$ 20 million.
In 2010, it grew to US$ 4.6 billion, accounting for 29% of total revenues. In the software industry, in July
2011, Apple, Inc. announced that over 15 billion apps have been downloaded from its App Store™ by the
more than 200 million users worldwide. In the book publishing industry, the introductions of Amazon’s
Kindle e-book reader in October 2007 and Apple’s iPad tablet computer in January 2010 generated a hope
that book readers would buy and read digital versions of books; and in fact they did. According to a report
from the Association of American Publishers, the e-book sales figures increased significantly on an
annual basis, up +164.4% for 2010 vs. 2009 ($441.3 million vs. $166.9 million). The e-book sales
represented 8.32% of the trade book market in 2010 vs. 3.20% the previous year.
What revenue model should be used to sell digital products online? In general, there are three
common revenue models: pure bundling (subscription), pure unbundling (pay-for-what-you-
download), and mix bundling. In pure bundling, consumers are required to purchase either the
entire bundle or nothing at all (i.e., subscription approach). In pure unbundling, consumers are