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Section 5

Data is raw facts and figures. It has no meaning without context.
Some examples: 465, B2.2, r2d2, wig
Logical or Boolean
Data stored in Boolean form can only be one of two available values.
It is on or off.
Examples: Yes/No, True/False, 1/0, M/F
Alphanumeric data is any combination of letters, numbers and
symbols. This data type is known as a string or text.
Examples: I like fish, @*!#, 4987 is a lot to pay for a badger
It is used to hold telephone numbers. In a computer telephone
numbers are stored as text. This is because the telephone number
contains a leading zero and spaces.
A real number is one which has decimal places
Examples: 12.4, 354.864, 3.14175
Integer numbers are whole numbers, no bits or decimal places
Examples: 99999, -34, 5
Dates can be stored in many different forms
In the UK we write the date in the form DD/MM/YYYY e.g. 22/07/2015
In the US the use the form MM/DD/YYYY e.g. 07/22/2015
Examples: 15/08/1999, 2009/11/30, 12/31/1999

Software will automatically add or $ to data and include a decimal
place e.g. 22.99
Images/sound bites/ video clips
Some databases will allow an image, sound and video clips to be
Examples: A photo of a criminal and their fingerprints on a crime
Key terms:
Data: On its own it has no meaning without context, it is raw facts
and figures.
On its own 130515 means nothing it is just a piece of data
You need to add format/ structure and context to data for it to make
sense this gives the data meaning.
For example:
130514 = data
13/05/15 = data with format/ structure which tells us this is a date
13/05/15 = this is a date of the ICT exam this year for year 11.
We know what data means we have information.
FIELD: A field is one piece of information that has been collected on
someone or something.
RECORD: A series of fields collected together
Height: Real
EST age: integer
Hair colour: Alphanumeric
Eye colour: Alphanumeric
Gender: Boolean

The information school stores about me are kept in a record as part

of a database.
Each piece of information they keep about me is stored in a field.
Two examples of fields used by the school to store my information
are my medical history and my name.





A key field is a field that is unique for a particular record in a

An example of a key field is pupil number because they are
unique to the student.
These are needed so that each field is unique as you cannot
have two students with the same number.
A flat file database is a simple database that only contains one
table of data.
One advantage of a flat file database is that it is organised into
a certain way so that it is easy to read.
Two disadvantages of a flat file database are when a record is
deleted, useful information may also be deleted and time can
be wasted typing the same data again for a different record.




A relational database is when data is stored into several

different tables, not as one large one, links are available to link
the data together is needed to be.
Two advantages of a relational database are they allow data to
be separated into different topics e.g. tools, customers and
rentals in a tool hire shop, and they can be read together if
needed to be because the tables have links linking them
Two disadvantages are they