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  • Re: To Null or not to Null. That is the question!

     Hi Andy (and all), I have to say I intensely dislike the use of the term "religious zealotry" in contexts such as the present.  I appreciate your apology (to Ken) and apparent retraction--of the term's usual connotation if not the term itself.  Chris Date and I would respond indignantly, claiming that we have put ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by hughdarwen on 05-21-2011
  • Re: To Null or not to Null. That is the question!

    Dear Ken, Thanks for promoting this discussion to its own thread. I think that will give it the space it needs to breathe. Also, though, I hope other people will feel free to join in the discussion.     I also like your proposal to take things in small chunks. This will allow us to get to the truth more easily. And btw, ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Andy Carver on 05-21-2011
  • Re: To Null or not to Null. That is the question!

     Hi Andy, Yes I agree with you about splitting the thread so here it is. I hope you like the title. I was tempted to use "Nulls pour les Nuls" but then I felt that the Shakespearian option would be more informative. Nulls are indeed a very important question which has hitherto not had the attention it deserves in this forum. So ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Ken Evans on 05-21-2011
  • To Null or not to Null. That is the question!

    Dear Ken, You have my deepest apologies for using language that might be construed, if mistakenly, as a put-down of Chris Date. I myself am a big fan of Mr. Date, whom I regard in precisely the same way as your Amazon reviewer does, and I meant no disrespect in calling him a "religious zealot" -- which, for me, is a term ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Andy Carver on 05-21-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    Ken, it sounds like you're proposing that every time we have a fact type that is many-to-one but not mandatory on either side, we should have a new table for it? Because frankly, that does sound like religious nonsense. It's not what Rmap does in this very common case, and that's a good thing too. The original non-mandatory fact type ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Anonymous on 05-20-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    Hi Andy, Well, I respect free speech  but your characterisation of Chris Date as a "Religeous Zealot" rather contrasts with what Amazon.com says about him which is: "Chris Date is the computer industry's most respected expert and thinker on database technology..." [quote user="Andy ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Ken Evans on 05-20-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    Hi Ken, Good to hear from you. Certainly, there are many religious zealots out there (of whom the generally sagacious Chris Date is one) on the issue of nulls and their advantages or disadvantages. Not to make fun of either side, but I'd be interested in finding anyone who could prove that having nulls causes more problems than does ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Andy Carver on 05-20-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    There seems to be an implied "Elephant in the Room" in this thread called "Nulls are OK" Isn't it the case that relational theory breaks down when missing values (nulls) are encountered in a table? Of course it seems that there are many RDBMS's out there that contain database instances that include ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Ken Evans on 05-20-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    P.S. Sorry for the typo in my hypothetical example, it should have read, "WHERE blah-blah is NOT null, THEN return such-and-such, ELSE WHERE blip-blip is NOT null, THEN...." <return so-and-so...> Cheers, Andy
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Andy Carver on 05-20-2011
  • Re: Modeling based an existence chain

    Hi Marc, I think maybe you're saying you'd prefer to have an ELSE clause carry the ball wherever a check for null finds a null -- something like, "WHERE blah-blah is null, THEN return such-and-such, ELSE WHERE blip-blip is null, THEN...." <return so-and-so...> I sympathize, one does intuitively feel the need for ...
    Posted to ORM Techniques (Forum) by Andy Carver on 05-20-2011
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