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Databases and Computing Models

Modeling and Methodology

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  • Description
Spreadsheets offer one of the most popular form of programming available to end users. They require little skill and, thanks to their simple and intuitive interface (the user directly manipulates the graphical representation of its objects), fairly complex computing models can be built without help of ICT professionals. Unfortunately, many spreadshets include more or less severe errors that make them unreliable.
This research addressed the problem of the systematic development of correct spreadsheets. It propose a simple and intuitive user-oriented methodology inspired from the database design methods. It includes an equational conceptual model, a logical model (an abstract spreadsheet) and three processes, namely conceptual design (including normalisation and validation steps), logical design and coding. Some semantics-preserving transformations for computing models are introduced.
This proposal was first published in [P90-02]. It was then expanded into a book that comprised three parts: I. Databases, II. Computing models, III. Database and Computing models coupling [B94]. A second book was published in 2000, in which part III was removed (it is now online) and Part I was extended [B00].
  • Keywords
computing model, equational model, spreadsheet, spreadsheet design, spreadsheet errors, spreadsheet/database coupling
  • Resources
[B00] Jean-Luc Hainaut. Bases de données et modèles de calcul - Méthodes et outils pour l’utilisateur, Editions 2, 3 et 4, Collection Sciences Sup, Dunod, Paris, 2000-2005. [book description]
[B94] Jean-Luc Hainaut. Bases de données et modèles de calcul - Méthodes et outils pour l’utilisateur, InterEditions, Paris, 1994. [book description]
[P90-02] Jean-Luc Hainaut. Systèmes d’aide à la décision : une approche méthodologique intégrée, in Actes du congrès INFORSID 1990, pages 7-34, Eyrolles-Afcet, 1990. [description] [full text]

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