Chapter 5 Study Questions
1. What is content?
In the broadest sense, content is property. It is closely related to intellectual
property (a creative endeavor that can be protected through a trademark,
patent, copyright, industrial design, or integrated circuit topography). Content
varies by industry.
Before the advent of the computer, content was only available on paper or in
photographs or movies. Computers created digital content that can be stored,
and networks like the Internet have increased the ability to distribute this
content. The expanding volume of content and the growing number of formats
in which it is provided can make it difficult for individuals and corporations to
effectively utilize that content.
2. How can content be organized?
The challenge in content management is indexing or cataloguing the right
information, processing and storing it, and then getting it to the right person in
the right format at the right time.
The management of many types of data has traditionally been handled through
organizational database management systems. These DBMS are central to the
management of content data.
The presentation of content in organizations today is increasingly handled
through a series of steps supported by software. Web content management
systems have been developed to help companies organize this process. When an
employee wants to place some content on the organization’s website, they will
access the web content management system (CMS). The web CMS is usually
located on the company’s website server. The employee loads the raw content
into the web CMS system. A copy editor then reviews the document and makes
changes. The content is then passed on to the artists, who prepare the content
for presentation. The content and presentation are stored with the help of a
DBMS. The manager in charge of the website will then review the content and
presentation and publish the work to the live website. The web CMS helps
manage each step of this process and enables a company to standardize the look
and feel of a website and control the information available to customers and
employees. 3. What is the purpose of a database?
A database keeps track of things that involve more than one theme. If the
structure of a list is simple enough, there is no need to use database technology,
as one could just use a spreadsheet. Spreadsheets cannot record additional data
in certain situations (ex: wanting to show student grades, emails, and office visits
in one place).
4. What does a database contain?
A database is a self-describing collection of integrated records.
A byte is a character of data.
Bytes are grouped into columns. Columns are also called fields.
Columns are grouped into rows, which are also called records.
A group of similar rows is called a table or a file.
A database is a collection of tables plus relationships among the rows in those
tables, plus special data, called metadata, that describe the structure of the
A key is a column or group of columns that identifies a unique row in a table.
Every table must have a key. Sometimes more than one column is needed to
form a unique identifier. With foreign keys, the columns are keys, but they are
keys of a different (foreign) table from the one in which they reside.
Databases that carry their data in the form of tables and that represent
relationships using foreign keys are called relational databases.
Metadata are data that describe data. The format of data depends on the
software product that is processing the database. The presence of metadata
makes databases much more useful than spreadsheets or data in other lists.
5. What is a DBMS, and what d