Database Structure

Thomas Schlemmermeyer termites at USP.BR
Mon Sep 15 12:53:44 CDT 1997


Dear readers,

About two weeks ago, there has been a discussion in this list about
database structures.

Unfortunately, I'm no specialist in this area. But nevertheless, I tried
to read the mails and two aspects called my attention:

1.) A brazilian list member suggested to make use of the concept of=20
relational databases by linking the data entries via a number code to
an established list of all possible species.
However, this would have the disadvantage to make the user memorize large
series of numbers.

My opinion: Programming under Windows, for example with Access97, allows to=
=20
construct selection boxes linked to a list with, for example, species names=
.
Even if this list is very large, the selection box still will be user=20
friendly.

A practical example of this kind of programming I recently found in another
context: my computer dictionary (Aurelio eletronico para Windows vers=E3o 2=
.0).
Here the list of "species" includes all words of the portuguese language,
but even though, one clicks quickly into the right word within a selection
box.

2.) An american contributor suggested to use the full binomial name instead
of separate fields for genus and species.

I think, that's a good idea. In some groups there may be multiple use of
the same species name in different genera. Providing the complete name in=
=20
one field easily avoids confusion and makes the whole database simpler.

Sorry for the late comment, but I continue being interested in the topic.

=09=09Thomas
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Thomas Schlemmermeyer
Museu de Zoologia, Universidade de S=E3o Paulo
Caixa Postal 42694
CEP 04299-970
S=E3o Paulo, SP, Brasil

Resid=EAncia:
Thomas Schlemmermeyer
Caixa Postal 00276
CEP 14001-970
Ribeir=E3o Preto, SP, Brasil

Fone, Fax: 016 6371999
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