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Chapter 18. Database Integrity > Theoretical Foundations

Theoretical Foundations

I'll go out on a limb here (yet again) and say that classical database theory really comprises only two topics: normalization, or the structuring of tables to avoid redundancy and avoid certain kinds of update anomalies, and the design of integrity constraints. Normalization formed the underpinning of Part II of this book, when we discussed the various ways in which entities are represented, although we didn't discuss the topic directly.

In this section, however, we will discuss the theoretical underpinnings of integrity constraints. We'll do so first because the classical terminology tends to be less well understood, and second because the classifications are useful in understanding how to implement them in the user interface.


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