Dbank

Time Series Data Management
for Windows Desktops and Servers.

Additional Features

Time Series Object Model

XLA Add-in for Ms Excel

SQL Engine

Data Warehousing

 

 

Features: Overview

Do you have trouble keeping track of all the time-series data in your organization? Would you like to organize your time-series data so they are easy to locate? If so, Dbank might be the tool you need.

Dbank is a network-ready, tree-structured filing system for time-series and cross-sectional data that runs under Microsoft Windows. The program is modeled after the Microsoft Windows’ File Manager; however, its fundamental object is a “time series” rather than a windows file. In addition to providing numerous tools for managing time-series and cross-sectional data, Dbank exports data to many statistical packages and spreadsheet programs (e.g., Microsoft Excel) with ease.

Dbank may be useful to people who need the same data in different formats because they routinely use more than one statistical/spreadsheet package to analyze this data. It is likely to be useful in corporations/institutions with large databases that need to be shared with many users at different locations. It has been found to be especially useful in university environments, central banks and economics departments where many users require different ASCII formats of the same data. Dbank provides a user-friendly solution to this common problem. Dbank has been used to manage over 3,000,000 time series on NT servers and NetWare 4.0/5.0.

Key features of Dbank are:

• TREE-STRUCTURED FILING SYSTEM

Dbank data banks are typically organized into groups of series. A “series” is simply a collection of data. A “group” within Dbank is simply a collection of series and other groups. Dbank data banks possess a hierarchical tree-structure similar to the Windows file system.

• FLEXIBLE DATA MANAGEMENT

Dbank has many commands for managing your data. For example, you can easily ADD series to the data bank, EDIT the data stored in a series, MOVE a series from one group to another, and COPY a series to another series, group or data bank. Dbank has a command to DELETE a series, one to VIEW the data stored in a series in a spreadsheet format, and commands to RENAME and PRINT series in the data bank. You can also create new series from existing series using an extensive MAKE facility with over 200 built-in functions.

• VISUAL BASIC FOR APPLICATIONS SUPPORT

Dbank defines a powerful time-series object for Microsoft Windows that enables you to manipulate Dbank time-series using the power and flexibility of Visual Basic for Applications (VB/VBA). The time-series object, in effect, augments VBA to understand Dbank time-series, making it easy, from either Microsoft Excel or Visual Basic, to copy time-series stored in a Dbank databank, edit the data, and then update the master. It also enables Excel to read Dbank databases directly; any stored observation can be assigned to a particular cell. The time-series object allows third-party developers to build their own solutions to time-series management.

• FLEXIBLE INPUT FORMATS

Dbank can read many types of ASCII data files, including DRI/FAME’s “CITIBASE TAPE” files, TSP data files, the IMF’s data subscription files (e.g., “IFS”, “BOPS”, “GFS” and “DOTS” CD-ROMS), the NIPA “PRN” and “BCI” file formats used by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (USA), “CRSP” data files, Statistics-Canada “.PRN”, “.CDF”, and “.FDC” files, and AREMOS “.TSD” files. It can also read many binary file formats directly, including EXCEL and LOTUS spreadsheet files, GAUSS “.DHT” and “.FMT” files, MetaStock/CompuTrac binary files, and RATSDATA/ESTIMA files. Dbank also allows you to update series from a remote host using FTP. This feature allows data providers to distribute and sell data to their customers via the Internet.

• MULTIPLE FREQUENCIES

Dbank manages data with MULTI-YEAR, ANNUAL, HALF-YEARLY, QUARTERLY, MONTHLY, WEEKLY or DAILY periodicity. The DAILY frequency allows you to specify a 5, 6 or 7-day week. Dbank also has a NULL frequency meant for cross-sectional or undated data. The program can handle missing values in the manipulation of series with different periodicity and start/end dates. Dbank automatically expands the frequency of a series so that it can be easily compared to other series with a higher frequency. This feature allows you to plot series of different frequencies on the same screen.

• FLEXIBLE EXPORT FACILITY

Dbank allows you to easily export your data to any one of the following statistical/spreadsheet packages: AREMOS, TSP, Micro TSP, GAUSS, LIMDEP, LOTUS, QUATTRO, EXCEL, SAS, SST, SYSTAT, MINITAB, RATS, BMDP, SPSS. Dbank can also convert your data to a lower frequency during the export process.

• MICROSOFT EXCEL SUPPORT

Dbank comes with an Excel Add-In that allows users to read and write Dbank time-series directly from Microsoft Excel. Implemented using Dbank’s time series object model, the add-in allows Excel users to read and write Dbank time series without actually invoking Dbank’s graphical user interface. Users can “hot-link” any cell an Excel spreadsheet to any time series observation and metadata stored in a Dbank database. The add-in provides the basis for sophisticated management reports that use all the power of Microsoft Excel for formatting time series information.

• “SQL” SUPPORT

Dbank allows you to issue Structured Query Language (SQL) commands on the series in a data bank. Using SQL, you can easily construct queries on the series titles ([Title]), the series names ([Name]), the series “memo” ([Description]), the frequency of the series ([Frequency]), and the “long-name” of the series ([Long Name]). Any of these items can be combined into a single SQL query using the File Query SQL statement command. For example, the SQL statement

[Title] like "*BALANCE*" and [Frequency] = "Q"

finds all the quarterly series in the selected data banks with the string "BALANCE" in their titles.
• DATA BANK MANAGEMENT

Dbank allows you to delete, copy, move, rename, and squeeze data banks. It also allows you to make read-only data banks, and “network-only” files that can be read only if they reside on a network drive.

• MICROSOFT SQL SERVER FILE STORAGE

Dbank’s default filing system uses Microsoft Access (MDB) files. However, for enhanced security and superior time-series storage, institutions may use Microsoft’s SQL server to store their time-series.


Suggestions for improving Dbank are always welcome and should be sent to dbank@singnet.com.sg. Information current as of 1-Jan-07. All brand and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

 

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