Comparing Object-Oriented and Extended-Entity-Relationship Data Models

Comparing Object-Oriented and Extended-Entity-Relationship Data Models

Bill C. Hardgrave (University of Arkansas, USA) and Nikunj P. Dalal (Oklahoma State University, USA)
Copyright: © 1995 |Pages: 8
DOI: 10.4018/jdm.1995070102
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Abstract

In the past few years, object–oriented (O–O) conceptual data modeling has emerged as an alternative to the traditional technique of entity–relationship modeling. O–O modeling is based on the premise that the resulting models are easier to use and understand. However, most claims of O–O modeling superiority are not empirically verified. Previous studies in this area have focused on a database modeler’s ability to create conceptual data models from a written description, but the concept of understanding a completed data model by a database designer has not been investigated. Thus, this study explores a database designer’s ability to understand an O–O conceptual data model – the Object Modeling Technique (OMT) – compared to an E–R model – the extended–entity– relationship model (EER). The OMT and EER conceptual data modeling techniques are compared using three modeling performance criteria: (1) model understanding; (2) time to understand; and (3) perceived ease–of–use. Results of this study indicate that the only difference between the two techniques is in the time to understand – OMT is significantly faster for both simple and complex problems.

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