[wp-hackers] Meta tables: Take 5

mrmist listswphackers at mist.org.uk
Fri Jul 24 20:21:47 UTC 2009

In message <0DA20520-821F-46DA-9D66-5FF7974C016C at striderweb.com>, 
Stephen Rider <wp-hackers at striderweb.com> writes
>So... You're suggesting making a whole new table every time a plugin 
>wants to add some bit of meta, rather than simply adding a column to 
>the meta table?
>No offense, but if I had a giant lever I could pull to open a trap 
>door and drop you into the Sarlaac Pit, I would be reaching for it 
>about now....

Indeed.  The sound of some of the ideas here - whilst I am sure they are 
built on good intentions - seems to go against the fundamentals of good 
database design.

There really shouldn't be a need to have many tables where one would 
suffice.  Indeed without proper design you'd end up with data 
duplication issues and a greater reliance on dynamicly generated sql 
instead of proper pre-designed queries in order to work around the 
deficiencies and complexity introduced.

I'm also unconvinced by a performance argument that suggests that 
multiple small tables are better.  With good indexing and queries one 
table should do just as well - if not better in some cases, because you 
can save on multiple round trips as all the data is in one place instead 
of 20.


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