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DBMS Interfaces

User-friendly interfaces provided by a DBMS may include the following. � Menu-Based interfaces for Web Clients or Browsing: These interfaces present user with lists of options, called menus, that lead the user through the formulation a request. Menus do away with the need to memorize the specific commands and syntax of a query language. Pull-down menus are a very popular technique in Web based user interfaces. They are also often used in browsing interfaces, which allows a user to look through the contents of a database. � Forms-Based Interfaces: A forms-based interface displays a form to each user. Forms are usually designed and programmed for naive users as interfaces to canned transactions. Some systems have utilities that define a form by letting the end user interactively construct a sample form on the screen. � Graphical User Interfaces: A graphical interface (GUI) typically displays a schema to the user in diagrammatic form. The user can then specify a query by manipulating diagram. In many cases, GUls utilize both menus and forms. Most GUls use a pointing device, such as a mouse, to pick certain parts of the displayed schema diagram. � Natural Language Interfaces: These interfaces accept requests written in English, Hindi or some other language and attempt to "understand" them. A natural language interface usually has its own "schema," which is similar to the database conceptual schema, as well as a dictionary of important words. � Interfaces for Parametric Users: Parametric users, such as bank tellers, often have a small set of operations that they must perform repeatedly. Systems analysts and programmers design and implement a special interface for each known class of na�ve users. Usually, a small set of abbreviated commands is included, with the goal of minimizing the number of keystrokes required for each request. For example, function keys in a terminal can be programmed to initiate the various commands. � Interfaces for the DBA. Most database systems contain privileged commands that can be used only by the DBA's staff. These include commands for creating account, setting system parameters, granting account authorization, changing a schema, and reorganizing the storage structures of a database.

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