An Overview and Introduction to Logic and Data Bases

  • Herve Gallaire
  • Jack Minker
  • Jean Marie Nicolas


In this introductory chapter we provide both an overview of mathematical logic and relational data base concepts that serve as background for the book, as well as an introduction to the major ideas discussed in the individual chapters. The first section of this paper is devoted to a description of first order logic, while the second describes the relational data base model. The next sections summarize the five major units of chapters.

The theme of this collection is that mathematical logic provides a conceptual framework for data base systems. The first unit demonstrates this, showing explicitly how data base concepts can be analyzed in terms of formal logic, and provides a characterization of the hypothetical worlds on which data base systems work. The second analyzes knowledge representation and how it relates to the process of deduction; alternate approaches are described and their advantages and limitations are noted. The third considers how logic may be used to express constraints on a data base and to maintain data base integrity. A similar approach proves useful in dealing with the fourth topic — meaning assigned to answers when negative questions are posed. The last demonstrates how logic provides a unifying framework for query language.


Query Language Semantic Network Atomic Formula Integrity Constraint Negative Information 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Herve Gallaire
    • 1
  • Jack Minker
    • 2
  • Jean Marie Nicolas
    • 1
  1. 1.ONERA-CERTToulouseFrance
  2. 2.University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

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