, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 270-294

Answering queries using views: A survey

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The problem of answering queries using views is to find efficient methods of answering a query using a set of previously defined materialized views over the database, rather than accessing the database relations. The problem has recently received significant attention because of its relevance to a wide variety of data management problems. In query optimization, finding a rewriting of a query using a set of materialized views can yield a more efficient query execution plan. To support the separation of the logical and physical views of data, a storage schema can be described using views over the logical schema. As a result, finding a query execution plan that accesses the storage amounts to solving the problem of answering queries using views. Finally, the problem arises in data integration systems, where data sources can be described as precomputed views over a mediated schema. This article surveys the state of the art on the problem of answering queries using views, and synthesizes the disparate works into a coherent framework. We describe the different applications of the problem, the algorithms proposed to solve it and the relevant theoretical results.

Received: 1 August 1999 / Accepted: 23 March 2001 Published online: 6 September 2001