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SQL: A Comparative Survey

SQL: A Comparative Survey
4.5 (24 reviews)
ISBN: 978-87-403-0778-8
2 edition
Pages : 169
  • Price: 129.00 kr
  • Price: €13.99
  • Price: £13.99
  • Price: ₹250
  • Price: $13.99
  • Price: 129.00 kr
  • Price: 129.00 kr

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About the book

  1. Description
  2. Content
  3. About the Author


SQL: A Comparative Survey is a companion to Hugh Darwen’s An Introduction to Relational Database Theory, best studied in parallel with that text. Closely following the structure of the theory book, it shows how the examples in that book can be expressed in SQL. SQL’s many deviations from relational database theory are thus exposed and their consequences discussed. Drawing on the author’s long experience as a member of the committee responsible for production of the ISO SQL standard, the book includes copious Historical Notes showing how SQL has evolved from its very beginnings in the 1970s.


  1. Introduction
    1. Introduction
    2. “Collection of Variables”
    3. What Is an SQL Database?
    4. “Table” Not Equal to “Relation”
    5. Anatomy of a Table
    6. What Is a DBMS?
    7. SQL Is a Database Language
    8. What Does an SQL DBMS Do?
    9. Creating and Destroying Base Tables
    10. Taking Note of Integrity Rules
    11. Taking Note of Authorisations
    12. Updating Variables
    13. Providing Results of Queries
  2. Values, Types, Variables, Operators
    1. Introduction
    2. Anatomy of A Command
    3. Important Distinctions
    4. A Closer Look at a Read-Only Operator (+)
    5. Read-only Operators in SQL
    6. What Is a Type?
    7. What Is a Type Used For?
    8. The Type of a Table
    9. Table Literals
    10. Types and Representations
    11. What Is a Variable?
    12. Updating a Variable
    13. Conclusion
  3. Predicates and Propositions
    1. Introduction
    2. What Is a Predicate?
    3. Substitution and Instantiation
    4. How a Table Represents an Extension…
    5. Deriving Predicates from Predicates
  4. Relational Algebra—The Foundation
    1. Introduction
    2. Relations and Predicates
    3. Relational Operators and Logical Operators
    4. JOIN and AND
    5. Renaming Columns
    6. Projection and Existential Quantification
    7. Restriction and AND
    8. Extension and AND
    9. UNION and OR
    10. Semidifference and NOT
    11. Concluding Remarks
  5. Building on The Foundation
    1. Introduction
    2. Semijoin and Composition
    3. Aggregate Operators
    4. Tables within a Table
    5. Using Aggregation on Nested Tables
    6. Summarization in SQL
    7. Grouping and Ungrouping in SQL
    8. Wrapping and unwrapping in SQL
    9. Table Comparison
    10. Other Operators on Tables and Rows
  6. Constraints and Updating
    1. Introduction
    2. A Closer Look at Constraints and Consistency
    3. Expressing Constraint Conditions
    4. Useful Shorthands for Expressing Some Constraints
    5. Updating Tables

About the Author

Hugh Darwen was employed in IBM’s software development divisions from 1967 to 2004. In the early part of his career, he was involved in DBMS development; from 1978 to 1982, he was one of the chief architects of an IBM product called Business System 12, a product that faithfully embraced the principles of the relational model. He was an active participant in the development of the international standard for SQL (and related standards) from 1988 to 2004. Based in the UK, he currently teaches relational database theory at Warwick University and is a tutor and course development consultant for the Open University. His previous publications are all collaborative efforts with Chris Date, perhaps the best known and mostly highly acclaimed author in the field of relational databases:

C.J. Date and Hugh Darwen: Databases, Types, and The Relational Model: The Third Manifesto. 3rd edition, Addison-Wesley, 2007.

C.J. Date, Hugh Darwen, Nikos Lorentzos: Temporal Data and The Relational Model. Morgan Kaufmann, 2001.

C.J. Date with Hugh Darwen: Relational Database Writings, 1989-1991. Addison-Wesley, 1992.

As Andrew Warden: "Adventures in Relationland", a special contribution in C.J. Date, Relational Database Writings, 1985-1989. Addison-Wesley, 1990.

C.J. Date with Hugh Darwen. A Guide to The SQL Standard. 4th edition, Addison-Wesley, 1997.

C.J. Date and Hugh Darwen. Database Explorations: Essays on The Third Manifesto. Trafford.

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