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Readings in Database Systems, Third Edition (The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Data Management Systems) 3rd Edition

4 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-1558605237
ISBN-10: 1558605231
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Readings in Database Systems, 3rd Edition is the most up-to-date compilation of papers to explore DBMS applications which were first published in the now classic "Red Book" in 1988. Dr. Stonebraker and Dr. Hellerstein have selected a spectrum of papers on the roots of the field, which include classic papers from the ‘70’s on the relational model to timely discourses on future directions. This new streamlined edition includes 46 papers that cover much of the significant research and development in the database field, organized by area of technology.

Expert introductory analysis of each section topic of the book is provided by leaders of the DBMS field along with a discussion of each reading.


From the Preface: "The main purpose of this collection is to present a technical context for research contributions and to make them accessible to anyone who is interested in database research. This book is intended as an introduction for students and professionals wanting an overview of the field. It is also designed to be a reference volume for anyone already active in database systems. This set of readings represents what we perceive to be the most important issues in the database area: the core material for any DBMS professional to study."


  • Third edition is completely revised and streamlined to include the most significant new and classic papers along with introductory materials
  • Coverage spans the entire field of database, including relational implementation, transaction management, distributed database, parallel database, objects and databases, data analysis, and benchmarking
  • Offers a new section on objects and databases including selections on object oriented databases as well as Object-Relational databases
  • Lecture notes available on Morgan Kaufmann Web Site updated by the authors to include each paper
  • The definitive book on DBMS applications

About the Author

Michael Stonebraker is a professor emeritus of computer science at the University of California at Berkeley. He is a founder of Ingres Corp. (now a division of Computer Associates), the founder of Illustra Information Technologies, Inc., a past chairman of the ACM Special Interest Group on Management of Data, and the author of many papers and books on DBMS technology. A well-known lecturer and keynote speaker, Dr. Stonebraker was the recipient of the first ACM SIGMOD innovations award in 1992.

Joseph M. Hellerstein is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley who earned his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin. His research interests include query processing, query optimization, indexing, and active databases, especially as applied to object database systems and on-line data analysis. He is on the ACM SIGMOD advisory board and is an associate editor of the IEEE Data Engineering Bulletin.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Morgan Kaufmann Series in Data Management Systems
  • Paperback: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 3 edition (March 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558605231
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558605237
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.5 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,412,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By A Customer on February 21, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book is well-known in academic database circles as "The Red Book" (in fact, the editors maintain a useful web site at [...]) and is a canonical resource in those circles. It's primarily intended as a reader/textbook for a graduate course in database systems and has a heavy emphasis on implementation issues. It contains a fair number of classic papers that should be read by anybody who actually works on database engines as well as a number of more recent papers that should be read by anyone who does research in database systems. The usefulness for end-users of databases (i.e., application writers) is unclear.
The 3rd edition, in my opinion, improves upon the 2nd edition considerably. Of course, it freshens the paper selection in some areas. More importantly, it prunes the number of subject areas considerably, resulting in a more manageable collection (in more ways than one!). For example, a great deal of work was performed in the late 1980s and early 1990s in areas such as extensibility and active database management. By the late 1990s, the SQL3/SQL1999 train had already left the station - work still goes on in these areas, but at a greatly reduced rate. Conversely, data mining and decision analysis have become hugely important areas, and the new Red Book has a section on it.
If there's a place where this book "missed the boat," it would probably be in terms of applications. The editors cut the section on user interfaces and programming models and have always ignored unstructured/semistructured data models. In these days of the Web, this choice is questionable; on the other hand, a lot of the most reasonable work in these areas has in fact appeared since 1998, so it's a bit hard to criticize with any degree of fairness!
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