Introduction to Information Systems (IIS)

SSC, 6th semester. Summer Term 2008.

Page outline

Course Description

Databases are at the heart of modern commercial application development. Their use extends beyond this to many applications and environments where large amounts of data must be stored for efficient update and retrieval. The purpose of this course is to provide an introduction to the design and use of database systems, as well as an appreciation of the key issues in building such systems in heterogeneous and Web environments.

We begin with the relational model and the SQL language. We then study methods for database design, covering the entity relationship model. Next, we discuss XML as a data model, and present languages for querying it. We see how XML is used for sharing data among different applications in a distributed environment. There is also a strong focus on XML (SOAP) based Web services. Finally, we touch on some advanced topics on the implementation of database systems, such as transactions, recovery etc.


Time & place

Lectures take place in CM5, Monday 8:15 - 10:00
Exercises/project: INF 1 & INF 3, Monday 10:15 - 12:00

Your team

Lecturer: Priv.-Doz. Dr. Heinz Stockinger

Teaching Assistants:

Student Assistant: Christian Abegg (Christan dot Abegg at epfl dot ch)


Exercises, Project & Grading

Students are requested to follow exercises and complete a project during the course.
The exercises are not graded, but solving them will help to prepare for the exam. Additionally, some exercises provide important information on the project!
The project is divided into 3 phases, and each phase will be graded. More information is available on IIS Project Web site. Please check it regularly for updates!

The grading formula:

Overall Schedule

The following table gives you a quick overview of the semester. We will update it to reflect necessary changes, add slides, solutions, etc.

Date Lecture Exercise Project and milestones
Mon 18-02-2008 Introduction pdf
Basic SQL pdf
Project introduction pdf
Start Phase 1
Mon 25-02-2008 Advanced SQL pdf E1: SQL (solutions) Team finalisation (11:30)
Understand Linux, Java, MySQL
Mon 03-03-2008 Entity/Relitionship Modelling pdf Create data model and database for your company
Mon 10-03-2008 Database Programming, JDBC pdf
Software Development Review pdf
Get experiene with JDBC: first implementation of Java program
Mon 17-03-2008 Relational Data Model pdf E2: Database tuning, Functional dependencies  (solutions) Adapt database schema accoring to normal forms.
Improved program and DB tuning for inserts and queries.
Mon 24-03-2008 Vacation (Easter)
Mon 31-03-2008 Relational Algebra pdf Finalise program and report
Thu 03-04-2008 Phase 1 due (17:00)
Mon 07-04-2008 XML and Web Services pdf Phase 1 discussion
Start Phase 2
First design ideas for tranding place (companies + bank).
Mon 14-04-2008 Web Services 2 pdf E3: XML and Web Services Part I , Part II (solutions) Project meeting (discussion of interfaces and roles (companies + bank)
Understand Web services
Mon 21-04-2008 XML Parsers, XPath and XQuery pdf Build Web service and create WSDL
Mon 28-04-2008 Regular expressions pdf
Transactions pdf
Phase 2 due (10:00)
Submit WSDL
Mon 28-04-2008 Phase 2 discussion (Finalisation of interfaces and screen shots)
Tue 29-04-2008 Start Phase 3
Receive URL (endpoint) + WSDL
Mon 04-05-2007 Recovery pdf E4: Transactions & recovery (Solutions) Start full service implementation acording to WSDL
Mon 12-05-2008 Vacation (Pentecôte)
Mon 19-05-2008 Database Heterogeneity pdf Test service interaction
Thu 22-05-2008 Phase 3 due (17:00)
Submit final report
Mon 26-05-2008 Project finalisation: on-line trading (8:15-12:00 INF1)
Thu 26-06-2008Final exam.
  • Time: 8:15 - 12:00
  • Location: BC01
  • All exam questions have to be answered in English.
  • No additional material is allowed (i.e. no lecture notes, no documentation etc.)




We hope you will attend every lecture. If you miss a lecture, please contact a colleague who was present, and be sure to check the Web site for any information passed during the lecture.

Academic Misconduct

All work turned in is expected to be your own. Although students are encouraged to study together, each student is expected to produce her/his own solution to the homework problems and projects. Copying or using sections of someone else's or some other group's program, even if it has been modified by you, is not acceptable.

Latest update: 16 May 2008.