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In programming, there is often a canonical book for a particular topic, like the dragon book for compilers, K&R for C, etc.

Is their a book regarding modern database design that simply must be read by anyone that would hope to eventually design databases?

I'm not looking for a bunch of recommendations here. The answer I'm looking for is either "Yes, it's [Title, author]." or "No, there are many good books on databases, but no one must-read."


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I'm not going to vote to close, but I think you might get better answers on stackoverflow ... – Kyle Brandt Sep 24 '09 at 11:20
It's way too subjective to answer. Should be a community wiki if it's going to stay up. – Evan Anderson Sep 24 '09 at 15:24
There's no way you're going to get an answer to this. You're going to get lots of answers, to which each person thinks that their book is "The" book, which means that really none of them are "The" book, because nobody can agree! – Mark Henderson Mar 13 '10 at 21:12
up vote 7 down vote accepted

It depends on what you're looking for, as it may have a bit too much of an academic slant, but I'd have to go for Introduction to Database Systems by C.J. Date.

+1: C. J. Date is considered an expert in the field of DB Design. – Powerlord Sep 28 '09 at 17:40
As Wikipedia puts it "His book An Introduction to Database Systems, currently in its 8th edition, is widely regarded as one of the fundamental texts on the subject. " – Powerlord Sep 28 '09 at 17:43

Sorry, I am giving you a list:

Developing High Quality Data Models, Matthew West, Morgan Kaufmann, 2011

Patterns of Data Modeling, Michael Blaha, (- 2010)

Database Modeling and Design – Logical Design 5th Edition, Toby Teorey, – 2011


"The Data Model Resource Book", all series, at least volume 1.

I often see people . even well educated . not cracking STANDARD problems because they never read how for example an accounting database should really be read, taking most things under consideration.


I'd say, Database Design for Mere Mortals, personally :)


I'd say there is no one book I'd recommend as THE design book. There are some good ones that can help.


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