The most commonly used format is in the form of a database since databases are not dependent on a single program or hardware platform. These databases are stored In five structures of hierarchical, network, relational, multidimensional, and object-oriented. Hierarchical structure organizes data In a one to many relationship. The network goes of the hierarchical structure by organizing data in a many to many relationship.

The elation structure organizes the data in tables and allows the end user to determine the relationship at run time. Multidimensional takes the relational structures concept and uses multi dimensions to organize the data. Object-oriented structure has not only the attributes of the entity, but also contain the operations that can be performed on It. Keynoters: Database, Relational, Hierarchical, Network, Multidimensional, Object- oriented. There are many ways to store and access data. One of these ways is using a data base.

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A database is an integrated collection of logically related data elements that are organized Into a common pool of data elements (O'Brien & Marks, 2011). These elements are stored In such a way that they are not dependent on any one program or any piece of hardware. Thus allows data to be shared easily between programs. A database uses a database management system or DB'S that use one of five specific data structure that allows the end user access to the data in the database. The five data structures are hierarchical, network, relational, object-oriented, and ultrasonically.

The first databases used the hierarchical data structure to store and gather the data. This structure the data relations are stored In a tree like records are dependent and arranged in multilevel with one root record and various subordinate levels. Any data element in the database can be found by starting at the root record and moving down the branches until the element is found. A network structure is similar to the hierarchical structure in that data is still dependent and arranged in multi levels. They defer from hierarchical structures in hat each data element can be link to one or more other elements In the structure.

This provides an advantage over the hierarchical structure In that you can get data over a broader range. Relational data structures differs from the previous examples in that the data is stored in a two dimensional table. In the table the rows represent the specific piece of data while the columns represent a data field. Data from the table or from multiple tables can be accessed by performing three basic operations. Select operation gets all the data from a table that meets a given criteria from the user. A relevant information out of the tables.

Join operations can even be used to combine tables from other databases. The third operation is the project operation and is used to get a subset of the fields that are relevant to the user. What makes a relational database relational is the fact that specific data in the database isn't linked to other elements like they are in the hierarchical or network models. In those models the relation between those elements are predefined. To create new relationships, a new root element or new connections would have to be made.

In a relational structure, the relations to each element are not predefined. They are organized in related groups and stored in various tables. The relationship between the elements are then defined by the end user when they query the DB. This flexibility in being able to define the relationships by the end user is what makes a relational database relational. Other database structures include the multidimensional and object-oriented models. In the multidimensional data is arranged in multidimensional structures as way to organize and express the relationships between them.

In object-oriented model stores not only the data sets, but also the operations that can be performed on them. With the flexibility a database provides for storing and finding data, they have become the one of the most common ways that we store data. Relational databases have become the most popular form because of the inherit flexibility they provide by allowing the end user to define the relation between the various data they are searching for.