Once you have a well-designed blueprint for your data, you can implement it in a
database. In this chapter we will concentrate on implementing our employee training
design in Microsoft Access. In the real world you may, in fact, make a different
implementation decision. You may opt to implement your data design in XML or some
other non-relationship database structure. If you decide that your proposed information
system will be used simultaneously by more than about twenty-five people, Microsoft
Access will in most cases not be the best choice. For those kinds of systems, an enterprise
database system, such as Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, or IBM DB2, would be much
better. But for information systems that serve a single person, a small workgroup, or a
low-traffic website, Microsoft Access can be a fine tool.
Recommended Naming Conventions
As you create your tables and fields in Microsoft Access or any database, it is a good idea
to follow these naming conventions.
Keep names short, but long enough to be descriptive.
Do not include spaces inside your table or field names. If you include spaces you
will have to hassle with square brackets () when you use those tables or fields in
SQL. Instead of spaces, just capitalize the first letter of each word.
Avoid the use of symbols, such as #, because they will cause problems when
referencing from programming code.
Avoid the use of Access and SQL reserved words (such as Order, Select, or Case)
and punctuation marks in table and field names.
Be consistent in your use of abbreviations. If you abbreviate number as Num in
one field name and No in another, you may confuse yourself later.
Avoid generic field names. Don't name a field named ID or Date. Instead, use
names like OrderID and OrderDate.
Some database programmers like to name primary key and foreign key fields
consistently so that they have the same name in both tables. Others prefer to name
all fields after the table. For instance they might name field in the employee table.
empID, empName, empDeptID. The empDeptID field would be a foreign key to
CNIT 180: Lab 8 – Database Implementation