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The practical SQL handbook : using structured query language /

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This superb text explains Structured Query Language (SQL) simply without being condescending and deeply without being obscure. From its early chapters about relational database theory to its superb coverage of transaction management, this book is informative and easy to follow. The authors begin by explaining how to design efficient data structures, an important part of database management. From there, they discuss how to populate a database with pieces of data and then explain how to construct queries that extract needed information. Throughout, the text is filled with statements, code, and output--and even common SQL errors. You ought to be able to follow along on any ANSI SQL 92-compliant system as you read this book. Later chapters cover reports, joins, views, subqueries, and security. The authors explain each from a practical point of view. A section on common business-database tasks (how to specify decimal precision, for example) confirms this point of view. A good glossary exists in the back of this book, and a comprehensive table documents the differences among Sybase, Microsoft, Informix, and Oracle SQL command sets. The companion CD-ROM contains the Sybase SQL Anywhere Studio software, which ordinarily requires a 15-megabyte download marathon. --David Wall

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