Towards an Efficient Evaluation of General Queries. Quantifier and Disjunction Processing Revisited.
ACM SIGMOD International Conference on the Management of Data, 31.5. - 2.6.1989, Portland, Oregon.
Database applications often require to
evaluate queries containing quantifiers or disjunctions,
e.g., for handling general integrity constraints. Existing
efficient methods for processing quantifiers depart from the
relational model as they rely on non-algebraic procedures.
Looking at quantified query evaluation from a new angle,
we propose an approach to process quantifiers that makes
use of relational algebra operators only. Our approach
performs in two phases. The first phase normalizes the
queries producing a canonical form. This form permits to
improve the translation into relational algebra performed
during the second phase. The improved translation relies
on a new operator - the complement-join - that generalizes
the set difference, on algebraic expressions of universal
quantifiers that avoid the expensive division operator in
many cases, and on a special processing of disjunctions by
means of constrained outer-joins. Our method achieves an
efficiency at least comparable with that of previous
proposals, better in most cases. Furthermore, it is considerably
simpler to implement as it completely relies on
relational data structures and operators.