Database design is the process of specifying the logical and/or physical parts of a database. The goal of database design is to make a representation of some "universe of discourse" - the types of facts, business rules and other requirements that the database is intended to model.

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A lot of the complexities involved in actually building a database engine aren’t related to the core features that you want to have. They are related to what looks like peripheral concerns. Backup / restore is an excellent example of that.