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SQL for Dummies [Paperback]

Allen G. Taylor
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1997 For Dummies

With the abundance of fine database applications -- from Microsoft Access and Claris FileMaker Pro to products from Oracle, Sybase, and Informix -- SQL is more important than ever as the glue that holds disparate databases together. Now completely updated with the latest on SQL enhancements and SQL-compatible database software, SQL For Dummies®, 2nd Edition, is the practical, easy-to-understand reference for anyone wanting to get something done using Standard Query Language.

In SQL For Dummies, 2nd Edition, computer information systems expert Allen G. Taylor offers practical, how-to guidance on tables, views, schemas, and indexes that make data access easy. He also provides expert tips on relational databases, SQL commands and data types, and SQL components like Data Definition Language, Data Manipulation Language, and Data Control Language. From the fundamentals of database structure and design to coverage of specific SQL commands, SQL For Dummies, 2nd Edition, is a must-have reference for anyone with databases to manage and systems to integrate.

Plus, SQL For Dummies, 2nd Edition, features coverage of accessing databases over the Internet and enhancing database application interfaces with development tools such as Borland's C++ Builder and IntraBuilder.


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This is the rare case of a book that can take you from a beginner to an advanced-intermediate level. Like many of the books in IDG's Dummies series, this volume begins with a definition ("What is SQL?") and ends with "The Part of Tens," a collection of tips in a top ten list form. Taylor writes in a breezy, entertaining style that SQL novices will find inviting. One caveat: The examples are given in Borland's Delphi, a rapid application development (RAD) tool. Some sections show several screen shots from Delphi and it may be difficult to follow along in these sections if you don't have the program in front of you. As with other Dummies books, SQL for Dummies is entertaining to read although the nonstop jokes may distract some readers from the technical content. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

Take charge of relational databases!

Now updated with coverage of the SQL:1999 standard

Step-by-step instructions for database design and implementation

The fun and easy way to create and maintain databases with SQL
SQL gives you the power to create, manipulate, update, and retrieve information in any major relational database management system. But how do you get up to speed on this complex language? Relax! With Allen G. Taylor at your side, you'll be building tables, creating views, and writing nested queries in no time.

Discover how to:

  • Understand SQL and relational databases basics
  • Build a multitable database
  • Retrieve data from a database
  • Use SQL in Internet and enterprise applications
  • Capitalize on new SQL:1999 features
THE DUMMIES WAY
  • Explanations in plain English
  • "Get in, get out" information
  • Icons and other navigational aids
  • Tear-out cheat sheet
  • Top ten lists
  • A dash of humor and fun
Get Smart! www.dummies.com
  • Register to win cool prizes
  • Browse exclusive articles and excerpts
  • Get a free Dummies Daily e-mail newsletter
  • Chat with authors and preview other books
  • Talk to us, ask questions, get answers
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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First Sentence
SQL (short for structured query language) is an industry-standard language specially designed to enable people to create databases, add new data to databases, maintain the data, and retrieve selected parts of the data. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars SQL, Unequalled May 5 2002
Format:Paperback
Buying any book targeted for 'dummies' sets the record straight in terms of my knowledge of SQL. I'm a South African computer science student and bought SQL for Dummies to supplement material prescribed by the university.
Firstly, the book is set out in an easy to understand manner starting with the section called Contents at a Glance and followed by an extensive Table of Contents. The text uses icons for tips, things to remember, warnings, technical stuff, etc. which reinforces key concepts.
Mr Taylor conveys his thoughts on a serious subject, particularly for first timers, in a humourous manner making the subject even more accessible. The contents of the book is set out in clear and concise way, with key topics highlighted. The book is extensive in its covering of the subject, not only directed at building and extracting information from a database, but also giving information on security issues and using SQL with the internet.
I found the book of particular use and can recommend it to any newcomers to SQL.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Starting Point Nov. 28 2001
Format:Paperback
The last time I worked with databases, my entire computer (RAM + mass storage) had less than one MEGAbyte of memory. No hard disk, just two 360 kB floppy disk drives and 128K of RAM. I just got saddled with a data-mining project that will process tens of gigabytes of data in a networked environment. My analysis tools can use SQL to access the data. This book was the first thing I insisted on. (Kind of embarassing for a senior person to be seen carrying a thick yellow and black book with the word "DUMMIES" on it ...)
This has proven to be an excellent starting point. I know plenty about computers and programming. I vaguely remember the essentials of relational databases (for those who don't, basic information is in the book, it should be enough to get started, even if you are absolutely ignorant!) Taylor packaged enough of the right information that I could read his book over the weekend and dive into the planning stages of our project on Monday sounding like I knew a thing or two.
The book charts a course from the most basic elements of databases to modestly complicated database and query materials. The author discusses common pitfalls and useful strategies. This book isn't enough, by itself, to turn somebody into a database wonk, but it's a great starting point.
I got a bit annoyed by some of the "cute" material used to make the subject seem less threatening, but that filler doesn't take up too much space and is easily skipped. Also, the book is overly Microsoft centered--the author uses Windows applications as examples and champions Microsofts ODBC. A section about using SQL in a Unix/Linux environment should have been included (access from shell scripts, PERL, etc?). A solid four-star introduction to SQL and database technology in a Microsoft world.
(If you'd like to discuss this book or review in more detail, please click on the "about me" link above and drop me some email. Thanks!)
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3.0 out of 5 stars Overall adequate, but could have been better July 7 2001
Format:Paperback
First off, I must stress that after I finished reading this book I did walk away with a far greater knowledge of SQL. To this end the book served its purpose and was worth the time/money I invested in the book.
My most serious criticism is that the early chapters introduced complex examples, which I forced myself to understand...only to discover that the author explained the issues more thoroughly at a later stage. On page 55 the author explains the MIN function with a sub/nested SQL query...introducing nested queries at such an early stage was a little confusing and it distracted me from the function being discussed.
As a result I spent considerable time working through the early chapters...but the later chapters were easy to follow.
Had the author taken a bit of time to consider the placement and appropriateness of each example, this book would have received a 4/5 rating in my mind. Of course an indirect advantage of this lack of fore-thought is that if the reader is prepared to work through the earlier examples the learning process is much more active.
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By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I found myself in a Borland C++ Builder seminar full of database programmers who all new SQL. Fortunately, most of them didn't know C++. The seminar leader recommended this book to me and I found it useful as a primer. It has good examples which I've used repeatedly. It is especially nice for Borland C++ Builder users since that is the RAD tool which the author is using.
It covers most of the features of SQL supported by the Borland Database Engine for Database creation and manipulation, although I found it somewhat lacking in the area of security.
I've read several other books on the subject now and I think it compares favorably with most. I find the subject of normalization lacking in all of the books. If you are new to SQL my recommendation is to reduce the subject of normalization down to this: keep the long tables skinny and the fat tables short and minimize data redundancy.
If your new to SQL it's a good starting place and worth the price. It's especially useful for BCB or Delphi Programmers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good intro to SQL Sept. 26 2000
Format:Paperback
This book helps to "demystify" SQL. Before I started reading this and also "Learn SQL in 10 Minutes," by Ben Forta, I had a mortal fear of databases, one that thanks to this book I now realize is totally unfounded. This book has a lot of good technical information about SQL, but it's presented in a way that makes it easy to understand and won't "scare off" the beginners like me. I liked how the author took great pains to explain a lot of SQL commands, making them relate to the topic being discussed.
The first two chapters cover relational database and SQL fundamentals. The next few chapters discuss more details about SQL, first its "languages," then how to build a SQL database, and once it's built how to retrieve data from it, and also issues relating to keeping it secure.
Generally, a good "Dummies" book on a complex subject.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars All that it claims to be
I like to start off projects with simple concepts and a few examples to get off the ground. Well this book does just that. Read more
Published on March 15 2007 by bernie
5.0 out of 5 stars Its Great
This book was just a good as my University's suggested text book. If you need to know something regarding SQL, it is IN HERE. Read more
Published on July 15 2003 by "udsteve"
1.0 out of 5 stars Want to learn SQL? Find some other book.
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I worked with SQL some years ago and bought this book as a refresher. I've used only one other "dummy" book and that was "ASP for Dummies" and found it... Read more
Published on June 10 2003 by S. King
5.0 out of 5 stars Would Rate This Book 6 stars out of 5
I bought SQL for Dummies when I was handed a web project that demanded a high traffic database. Previous to the purchase I had only worked with flat text files and had no SQL... Read more
Published on Jan. 29 2003 by Roger
2.0 out of 5 stars You will be dummy if you buy this book
Poorly written, jumps back and force between the topics not yet explained
Published on July 19 2002 by JohnDoe155
1.0 out of 5 stars Definitely NOT for beginners
This book assumes you already know the basics of SQL and programming. Feh! I sent it back and got PL/SQL 101... Read more
Published on May 29 2002 by Larry Wolkoski
1.0 out of 5 stars Dummies, my hat!
After being thrown kicking and screaming into the world of the relational database, I figured I'd better get some book-learning from something that would start with the absolute... Read more
Published on Feb. 21 2001
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't waste your money
I was unimpressed with the way this book is presented. Not enough examples of core SQL.
Published on Oct. 21 1999 by Kathy Bungard
5.0 out of 5 stars This was an excellent SQL primer
I spent a lot of time looking for a book that actually covered ANSI 92 SQL, and even though I vowed a long time ago to never buy a 'Dummies' book, this one was an exception and... Read more
Published on Sept. 29 1999
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