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Definition of terms

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Reports and databases




The term "Report" describes a printout of data records from a database. The report defines the look of the printout (layout, fonts, arrangement of data fields, etc.). For example if you want to print a list of addresses, you use a report to tell the computer which fields of your address database to print and in which order. A report can print data as a list, page by page or any other way you want your data to be printed.




A file with data records of the same type is called table, e.g. a file with address information, parts or invoice items. A table can be a single file, for example a DBase or Paradox file, or it can be part of a database (see below).




A query consists of SQL statements, which are used to access a table or database and to retrieve a group of data records. SQL means "Structured Query Language" and is a kind of programming language for databases. A complete description of SQL is beyond the scope of this manual, but there are many books available on this topic.




A dataset is used as a collective name for tables and queries.




Queries and tables can be grouped together in a database, which can be a local file on your harddisk or a database server in a network. To access a table you need either its directory if it is a single file, or you need the database name if the table is part of a database.




Aliases are descriptive names available as placeholders for pathnames or databases.