Practical SQL, 2nd Edition Cover

Practical SQL, 2nd Edition

A Beginner’s Guide to Storytelling with Data
by Anthony DeBarros
February 2022, 392 pp.
ISBN-13: 
9781718501065

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Download Chapter 3: BEGINNING DATA EXPLORATION WITH SELECT

Practical SQL, 1st currently available.

Practical SQL is an approachable and fast-paced guide to SQL (Structured Query Language), the standard programming language for defining, organizing, and exploring data in relational databases. Anthony DeBarros, a journalist and data analyst, focuses on using SQL to find the story within your data. The examples and code use the open-source database PostgreSQL and its companion pgAdmin interface, and the concepts you learn will apply to most database management systems, including MySQL, Oracle, SQLite, and others.*

You’ll first cover the fundamentals of databases and the SQL language, then build skills by analyzing data from real-world datasets such as US Census demographics, New York City taxi rides, and earthquakes from US Geological Survey. Each chapter includes exercises and examples that teach even those who have never programmed before all the tools necessary to build powerful databases and access information quickly and efficiently.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Create databases and related tables using your own data
  • Aggregate, sort, and filter data to find patterns
  • Use functions for basic math and advanced statistical operations
  • Identify errors in data and clean them up
  • Analyze spatial data with a geographic information system (PostGIS)
  • Create advanced queries and automate tasks

This updated second edition has been thoroughly revised to reflect the latest in SQL features, including additional advanced query techniques for wrangling data. This edition also has two new chapters: an expanded set of instructions on for setting up your system plus a chapter on using PostgreSQL with the popular JSON data interchange format.

Learning SQL doesn’t have to be dry and complicated. Practical SQL delivers clear examples with an easy-to-follow approach to teach you the tools you need to build and manage your own databases.

* Microsoft SQL Server employs a variant of the language called T-SQL, which is not covered by Practical SQL.

Author Bio 

Anthony DeBarros is a longtime journalist who has combined his interests in data analysis, coding, software product development, and storytelling for much of his career. He is a data news editor for The Wall Street Journal, focusing on topics such as the economy, trade, the U.S. Census, and politics. He previously held positions with USA TODAY, the Poughkeepsie Journal, and the DocumentCloud project for Investigative Reporters and Editors. His work has received multiple honors, including a prestigious Silver Baton from the Alfred I. duPont - Columbia University Awards.

Reviews 

“One of the best-organized travelogues we've seen into the SQL realm.”
—Newstips Bulletin

"Slightly more fun and more engaging [than Learning SQL from O'Reilly]."
—Python Programmer, YouTuber

“Practical SQL will take you from an absolute databases beginner towards becoming a database and SQL master. This book is one of those books that you feel like reading a novel, not a technical book. It uses an easy to follow and understand the approach that makes it easy to read for people from all backgrounds.”
—Sara A. Metwalli, Towards Data Science