Do you need a database?

Hank Rappaport, 28 April 2015

Data whisperings

Part 1 – Definitions

I gave a talk recently designed to help non-techies understand what a database is, what it can do for them, and simple techniques for getting started doing database style manipulations of their information. In this and subsequent blog posts I will share those thoughts with a larger audience.

This blog assumes you are familiar with the basics of using Microsoft Excel. You are comfortable entering data into a spreadsheet and doing simple operations like getting column totals, doing sorting and filtering.

So what is a database, and how does it differ from what you can do in Excel? 

I like to think of databases as once you get stuck in Excel or you have a challenge doing something in Excel, databases are probably what you need to jump to next.

So what could a database be?  More

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