The Database: Overview

The KAP database is a relational database, composed of a series of linked tables that store data in columns (which each represent a particular attribute, like a diameter or a color) and rows (which represent unique records or pieces of data added to the database, like a diameter of 8 cm recorded for ceramic sample 93.545.23.5). The most important thing to be aware of is that these tables are linked based on unique primary keys, the most important of which is the context key (e.g., 93.545.23). Remembering this will help you determine how best to find the information you seek.

The database consists of two interlinked components that work in tandem: The “back-end” database is built in PostgreSQL; a long-term goal is to re-integrate a PostGIS component into PostgreSQL that will allow archived spatial data to be curated in the database (e.g., spatial context polygons, polygon and line illustrations of contexts, and approximate context points). The “front end” of the database—with which users will most often interact—is provided by Microsoft Access. On the server, at gygaia\database, you will find a number of MS Access forms used for data entry, query, and retrieval. Each form is customized for a different aspect of the project. For example, the Samples: Entry form is used by excavators collecting samples in the field, while the Samples Entry: Ceramics form is used by ceramics specialists. This means you will most likely be using one or two forms exclusively for data entry depending on what kind of work you are doing, but also that you might need to look in multiple forms to locate different kinds of information. The other way to extract information from the database is by writing queries; here is more information on how to write a query.

Explore information on the various available forms at the links below:

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