On the Semantics of the Entity-Relationship Data Model.

Y. Edmund Lien: On the Semantics of the Entity-Relationship Data Model. ER 1979: 155-168
  author    = {Y. Edmund Lien},
  editor    = {Peter P. Chen},
  title     = {On the Semantics of the Entity-Relationship Data Model},
  booktitle = {Entity-Relationship Approach to Systems Analysis and Design.
                Proc. 1st International Conference on the Entity-Relationship
  publisher = {North-Holland},
  year      = {1979},
  isbn      = {0-444-85487-8},
  pages     = {155-168},
  ee        = {db/conf/er/Lien79.html},
  crossref  = {DBLP:conf/er/79},
  bibsource = {DBLP,}


This paper proves the equivalence of two notions: that of navigational and existence semantics in the entity-relationship (ER) model, and that of multivalued dependency in the relational model. Navigational semantics are concerned with access to a database according to prescribed paths in the schema definition, and existence semantics give the dependency of one record on another record during database updates. When an ER database observes its existence dependencies, its access paths can be represented by a universal relation. Hence, data operations on an ER database can be interpreted in terms of relational operations on the corresponding universal relation. This paper gives the meanings of three operations, FIND, INSERT, and DELETE, in the contexts of both the ER model and the relational model. We also show that the universal relation corresponding to an ER database satisfies a set of multivalued dependencies, which can easily be recognized from the graphical representation of the schema.

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Catriel Beeri, Philip A. Bernstein, Nathan Goodman: A Sophisticate's Introduction to Database Normalization Theory. VLDB 1978: 113-124 BibTeX
Peter P. Chen: The Entity-Relationship Model - Toward a Unified View of Data. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 1(1): 9-36(1976) BibTeX
Peter P. Chen: The entity-relationship model: a basis for the enterprise view of data. AFIPS National Computer Conference 1977: 77-84 BibTeX
E. F. Codd: A Relational Model of Data for Large Shared Data Banks. Commun. ACM 13(6): 377-387(1970) BibTeX
E. F. Codd: Normalized Data Structure: A Brief Tutorial. SIGFIDET Workshop 1971: 1-17 BibTeX
C. J. Date: An Introduction to Database Systems, 2nd Edition. Addison-Wesley 1977
Ronald Fagin: Multivalued Dependencies and a New Normal Form for Relational Databases. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 2(3): 262-278(1977) BibTeX
Y. Edmund Lien: Multivalued Dependencies with Null Values in Relational Data Bases. VLDB 1979: 61-66 BibTeX

Referenced by

  1. Jürgen Ebert, Andreas Winter, Peter Dahm, Angelika Franzke, Roger Süttenbach: Graph Based Modeling and Implementation with EER / GRAL. ER 1996: 163-178
  2. Serge Abiteboul, Richard Hull, Victor Vianu: Foundations of Databases. Addison-Wesley 1995, ISBN 0-201-53771-0
  3. Victor M. Markowitz, Arie Shoshani: Representing Extended Entity-Relationship Structures in Relational Databases: A Modular Approach. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 17(3): 423-464(1992)
  4. Marie Duzi: Semantic Information Connected with Data. ICDT 1992: 376-390
  5. Victor M. Markowitz, Arie Shoshani: Abbreviated Query Interpretation in Extended Entity-Relationship Oriented Databases. ER 1989: 325-343
  6. Asuman Dogac, Esen A. Ozkarahan, Peter P. Chen: An Integrity System for a Relational Database Architecture. ER 1989: 287-301
  7. Frederick N. Springsteel, Po-Jen Chuang: ERDDS: The Intelligent E-R-Based Database Design System. ER 1988: 349-368
  8. Asuman Dogac, Peter P. Chen, N. Erol: The Design and Implementation of an Integrity Subsystem for the Relational DBMS RAP. ER 1985: 295-302
  9. Joseph A. Wald, Paul G. Sorenson: Resolving the Query Inference Problem Using Steiner Trees. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 9(3): 348-368(1984)
  10. Richard Hull: Relative Information Capacity of Simple Relational Database Schemata. PODS 1984: 97-109
  11. Robert Brown, Douglas Stott Parker Jr.: LAURA: A Formal Data Model and her Logical Design Methodology. VLDB 1983: 206-218
  12. Sushil Jajodia, Peter A. Ng: On the Representation of Relational Structures by Entity-Relationship Diagrams. ER 1983: 249-263
  13. Carlo Zaniolo, Michel A. Melkanoff: A Formal Approach to the Definition and the Design of Conceptual Schemata for Database Systems. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 7(1): 24-59(1982)
  14. Ronald Fagin, Alberto O. Mendelzon, Jeffrey D. Ullman: A Simplified Universal Relation Assumption and Its Properties. ACM Trans. Database Syst. 7(3): 343-360(1982)
  15. Paolo Atzeni, Douglas Stott Parker Jr.: Assumptions in Relational Database Theory. PODS 1982: 1-9
  16. Ilchoo Chung, Fumio Nakamura, Peter P. Chen: A Decomposition of Relations Using the Entity-Relationship Approach. ER 1981: 149-171
  17. Peter P. Chen: Recent Literature on the Entity-Relationship Approach. ER 1979: 3-12
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