Spatial databases are designed to store large amounts of data. This data stored in the databases is normally related to other objects. Spatial databases differ from traditional databases because the databases can manipulate geometries and functions such as construction, serialization, predicates, builders, aggregates, accessors, and analysis and measurement. Storing and retrieving data fast and efficiently from these databases is of great concern to people using this technology. Here are some spatial database tips and tricks to help maximize use of these tools.
1. Use Bounding Boxes
Some commands, such as answering questions like, “Is A inside B?” are “computationally expensive.” When this command is performed using polygons, it is not as efficient as when boxes are used. Many complex linestrings and complex polygons are represented by a simple bounding box. Bounding boxes are one of the major benefits of spatial databases.
2. Choose the Best Spatial Databases for the Best Results
Currently, there are three spatial databases on the market that perform better than others. The three most popular and effective databases include: Oracle RDBMS with Spatial, SQL Server 2008 with Spatial, and PostgreSQL with PostGIS. Some experts also recommend relational databases with spatial types, indexes and functions. There are two options from IBM: IBM DB2 with Spatial Extender or IBM Informix with Spatial Blade. Microsoft also has a spatial database that was released in 2008. SQL Server includes spatial indexes, functions and types.
3. Choose a Non-Enterprise Based Option
Oracle’s enterprise-only option reduces the number of deployable users. This makes the spatial database program very expensive. To reduce costs, Oracle Spatial can be split into “Locator” and “Spatial.” The limitations to this program include the inability to run a buffer operator, union operator or intersection operator in Locator. A centroid point cannot be generated in Locator either. The best scenario is to select a non-enterprise based option to increase the number of deployable users and reduce the costs.
4. Choose a Spatial Database Package With These Options
Geo-processing is an important part of spatial databases. Extension packages are available to provide this type of functionality. These extension packages include linear referencing system (LRS) support, spatial analysis and mining functions, GeoRaster support and geocoding support. Topology data model and network data model are also a part of the extension packages. These extension packages improve the functionality of this spatial database package.
5. Choose a Spatial Database With a Multi-Level Grid Scheme
The SQL Server uses a “multilevel grid scheme” instead of R-trees. A novel index method is not required for this spatial database type. Standard b-trees are commonly used for indexing the grid. The only disadvantage to this scenario is the necessity to update and improve the grid levels for data with large and small objects.
Follow These Tips for Better Spatial Database Functionality
By following these tips, there will be greater functionality when using spatial databases. Selecting the best spatial database is often the key to success. Certain spatial databases have greater functionality than others. These tips will ensure the greatest functionality. Review all of the tips and make the proper selection based upon the data gathered.