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Chapter 12. Database Management > Creating and Using a Database

Creating and Using a Database

Database management systems are efficient tools for organizing and processing large amounts of information, for example, your company's accounting work, inventory customer records, and mailing lists. Data refers to individual items of information such as a customer's name, address, or phone number. A database is a collection of data, such as a mailing list. A database management system is computer software that allows you to store and manage the data in your database.

Although the various database programs available are different, the key to all of them is the way you organize your data. Let's say you want to keep a list of the company's customers. You might start with their names, addresses, and telephone numbers. With this list, you can easily look up telephone numbers or print out mailing labels to send out a marketing newsletter. But what if you wanted to know which customers purchased a particular product or service from the company or how much they spent? To do this, you would have to keep additional information about each customer.


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