Digital Review

Review - Computable Queries for Relational Data Bases.

Victor Vianu: Review - Computable Queries for Relational Data Bases. ACM SIGMOD Digital Review 2: (2000) BibTeX


I have a vivid memory of meeting Ashok Chandra about fifteen years ago, while we were both visiting Serge Abiteboul at INRIA. After the ritual coffee, Serge, Ashok and I took a walk amid the barracks that had once served as NATO headquarters. Ashok, who was a kind of guru to us young ones, challenged us with a question that goes to the existential core of our field: what makes databases different? Does our area have a legitimate, well-motivated "raison d'etre", or does it amount to no more than an ad-hoc collection of recipes from programming languages, data structures, and algorithms? It is a question that he had tackled together with David Harel in this elegant paper, which in some sense established the theory of query languages as a field of research.Its definition of database query, using the notion of genericity, provided the foundation for much of the work that followed. Personally, I was profoundly influenced by this paper and much of my subsequent research with Serge on query languages was, at the bottom of it, an attempt to answer Ashok's question.

Copyright © 2000 by the author(s). Review published with permission.


Ashok K. Chandra, David Harel: Computable Queries for Relational Data Bases. J. Comput. Syst. Sci. 21(2): 156-178(1980) BibTeX
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