Supporting real-world activities in database management systems
The cycle of processing the data in many application domains is complex and may involve real-world activities that are external to the database, e.g., wet-lab experiments, instrument readings, and manual measurements. These real-world activities may take long time to prepare for and to perform, and hence introduce inherently long time delays between the updates in the database. The presence of these long delays between the updates, along with the need for the intermediate results to be instantly available, makes supporting real-world activities in the database engine a challenging task. In this paper, we address these challenges through a system that enables users to reflect their updates immediately into the database while keeping track of the dependent and potentially invalid data items until they are re-validated. The proposed system includes: (1) semantics and syntax for interfaces through which users can express the dependencies among data items, (2) new operators to alert users when the returned query results contain potentially invalid or out-of-date data, and to enable evaluating queries on either valid data only, or both valid and potentially invalid data, and (3) mechanisms for data invalidation and revalidation. The proposed system is being realized via extensions to PostgreSQL.
database management systems, query processing, PostgreSQL, data invalidation, data revalidation, database engine, database management systems, instrument readings, supporting real world activities, wet lab experiments
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