Skip site navigation (1) Skip section navigation (2)

Re: How to modify ENUM datatypes?

From: Chris Browne <cbbrowne(at)acm(dot)org>
To: pgsql-general(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: How to modify ENUM datatypes?
Date: 2008-04-24 18:12:42
Message-ID: 603apb86lh.fsf@dba2.int.libertyrms.com (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-general
ajs(at)crankycanuck(dot)ca (Andrew Sullivan) writes:
> On Wed, Apr 23, 2008 at 07:46:07PM -0400, brian wrote:
>> 
>> Absolutely true. Which is odd, because this example is trotted out 
>> whenever there's a thread about ENUMs.
>
> I don't think it's odd at all.  In my view, the people who think enums are a
> good datatype for databases are exactly the sorts who'd think that their
> data is as static as this poor understanding of the vagaries of individuals'
> sex (gender is a different problem, given its association with social roles)
> would suggest.
>
> The world moves around in unexpected ways.  Your data model needs to
> accommodate itself to the world, because the alternative is not going to
> happen.

By the same token, a limited model, at least in this area, frequently
is sufficient to cover the set of ways in which legal systems
recognize and consider gender when constructing
 legislation.

And it's not evident that the simplification is a dramatic
oversimplification that causes a great deal of legal failures to the
extent to which it mandates that every system *needs* to track sex in
a more detailed fashion than (male, female, unknown, n/a).

I'm not sure, for instance, that I actually know what the word
"phenotype" means, and there's reason to imagine I might be somewhat
more "generally literate" than average.  If I'm not sure, there seems
little reason to expect that people with varying levels of
comprehension necessarily be able to choose from a more elaborate set
of options with accuracy.

After spending literal billions of dollars on security efforts, it
doesn't appear that security infrastructures that have *enormous*
incentive have had much luck successfully identifying who is a
terrorist and who is not; they consistently have extraordinary levels
of "Type II" (false positive) reporting errors.
-- 
let name="cbbrowne" and tld="acm.org" in name ^ "@" ^ tld;;
http://cbbrowne.com/info/linuxdistributions.html
"There is no  reason anyone would want a computer  in their home".  
-- Ken Olson, Pres. and founder of Digital Equipment Corp.  1977

In response to

pgsql-general by date

Next:From: Joshua D. DrakeDate: 2008-04-24 18:13:59
Subject: Re: Adding notes against fields
Previous:From: Richard HuxtonDate: 2008-04-24 18:04:34
Subject: Re: Adding notes against fields

Privacy Policy | About PostgreSQL
Copyright © 1996-2014 The PostgreSQL Global Development Group