Visualizing Database Management with SVG

Abstract

As people build information supply chains over the Internet, a huge amount of business data is stored into databases. The high volume of data and the high speed of data ingestion challenges traditional database management. Database administrators (DBAs) frequently run SQL scripts to generate reports from database catalog views, data dictionary views, and tables. To transform this dizzing array of data into useful information, we need reports to be straightforward, and graphics are often easier to understand than pages full of text.

Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG), an XML-based graphics standard recommended by World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), can help us achieve this and more. In this paper, we present a detailed study of an approach leveraging native XML database functionality, XSLT and SVG to help DBAs visualize the data and its metadata for database management.

In the example application, we use the native XML functionality to deliver XML content, use XSLT to generate SVG and manage SVG code fragments by storing them in native XML datatypes, which can be directly accessed through the database's HTTP server. The application also uses the SVG DOM APIs to build an interactive interface to provide on demand visualization for better decision support.