>From: Kevin Hunter [mailto:hunteke@stripped]
>Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2008 10:59 PM
>To: John Smith
>Cc: MySQL General List
>Subject: Re: Normalization vs. Performance
>At 2:11pm -0400 on Tue, 26 Aug 2008, John Smith wrote:
>> So how bad is this? The mentioned query will be the query which is
>> the most in my application (yes, it is going to be a forum).
>> Should I break normalization and save the date of the root in each
>My recommendation is no. Normalization is a Good Thing, and you'll be
>hard-pressed to convince me otherwise. In the long run, you (or
>following programmers) will thank yourself if you maintain a normalized
>core data model. Seriously.
>But speed and performance are the here-and-now issues while DB
>technology "catches up" to demands. Have you looked at temporary tables
>or materialized views? These might help you in this endeavor.
[JS] You can sometimes cheat.
Our database is normalized, but many of our users want to use MS Access to
get at the data in read-only mode to extract data into Excel. Rather than
trying to teach them how to define the necessary JOINs, I periodically build
a non-normalized table for them. For example, I take the values from a
dependent (1:n) table and use GROUP_CONCAT to stuff them into a single field
in the unnormalized table.
True, the data isn't up-to-the-minute. I truncate the table and reload it
daily. It is good enough for them.
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