database is simply a structured and systematic way of storing information to be accessed, analyzed, transformed, updated and moved (to other databases).

To begin understanding databases, consider an Excel notebook or Google sheet. Spreadsheets like these are a basic form of a table. Databases are almost exclusively organized in tables and those tables have rows and columns. So, think of a simple database as a collection of spreadsheets (or tables) joined together in a systematic way.

Why Do We Use Databases?

Computerized databases were first introduced to the world in the 1960s and have since become the foundation for products, analysis, business processes and more. Many of the services you use online every day (banking, social media, shopping, email) are all built on top of databases.

Today, databases are used for many reasons.

Types of Databases

There are many types of databases used today. Below are some of the more prominent ones.

Hierarchical Databases

Hierarchical databases were the earliest form of databases. You can think of these databases like a simplified family tree.

Relational Databases

Relational databases are perhaps the most popular type of database. Relational databases are set up to connect their objects to each other with keys.

Non-Relational Databases

Non-relational databases were invented recently than relational databases and hierarchical databases in response to the growing complexity of web applications.

Cloud Databases

Cloud databases refer to information that’s accessible in a hybrid or cloud environment.

Centralized Databases

Centralized databases are contained within a single computer or another physical system.

Distributed Databases

Distributed databases run on more than one device. That can be as simple as operating several computers on the same site

Object-Oriented Databases

Object-oriented databases perceive data as objects and classes. Objects are specific data — like names and videos

Graph Databases

Graph databases highlight the relationships between various data points.