Case Study Chapter 5

Topics: Spencer Wells, Data warehouse, Genographic Project Pages: 2 (611 words) Published: May 29, 2013
Case Study Chapter 5
Discussion Questions
1. What role do database and DBMS play in assisting with the Genographic Project? “Without the automation provided by database tools, this research would not be possible. Dr. Spencer Wells, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and Scientific Director of the Project, stated that “With hundreds of thousands of samples, researchers could easily become lost in our collected data. But, by working with IBM, we can distill this information into something useful—research breakthroughs and new findings.”” (Stair & Reynolds, 2012) Without the use of the database, organizing the collected data would easily become a discombobulated confusing mess of useless information. The ability to organize the hundreds upon thousands of pieces of data, the research teams are able to find commonalities and link even the most minute detail to another. (109) 2. What types of data are stored in the Genographic database, and how might it be organized into the data hierarchy discussed in this chapter? The types of data that could be stored in the database could include, but not limited to, the following: name, sex, country of origin, blood type, DNA, and that DNA would be broken down into many different types of markers and mitochondria. From all of that is collected it is then put into like groupings. “Data is generally organized in a hierarchy that begins with the smallest piece of data used by computers (a bit) and progresses through the hierarchy to a database.”(Stair & Reynolds, 2012) After that smallest piece of data it then goes into larger groups, fields- specific items such as name, records-each individual’s information or a commonality marker, files-all of the information on an individual or all of the common marker, and then finally the database as a whole. (132) Critical Thinking Questions

1. How is the manipulation of Genographic data similar to the manipulation of business data? What DBMS tools and techniques are shared by both?...

References: Geno 2.0: The greatest journey ever told. (2012). Retrieved from
Stair, R. M., & Reynolds, G. W. (2012). Principles of Information Systems: Tenth Edition. Stanford, CT: Cengage Learning.
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