Chapter 15. Using SQL within Applications

In This Chapter

  • Using SQL within an application

  • Combining SQL with procedural languages

  • Avoiding interlanguage incompatibilities

  • Embedding SQL in your procedural code

  • Calling SQL modules from your procedural code

  • Invoking SQL from a RAD tool

Previous chapters address SQL statements mostly in isolation. For example, questions are asked about data, and SQL queries are developed that retrieve answers to the questions. This mode of operation, interactive SQL, is fine for discovering what SQL can do, but that's not how SQL is typically used.

Even though SQL syntax can be described as similar to English, it isn't an easy language to master. The overwhelming majority of computer users are not fluent in SQL. You can reasonably assume that the overwhelming majority of computer users will never be fluent in SQL, even if this book is wildly successful. When a database question comes up, Joe User probably won't sit down at his terminal and enter an SQL SELECT statement to find the answer. Systems analysts and application developers are the people who are likely to be comfortable with SQL, and they typically don't make a career out of entering ad hoc queries into databases. Instead, they develop applications to make those queries.

If you plan to perform the same operation repeatedly, you shouldn't have to rebuild it every time from the console. Write an application to do the job and then run it as often as you like. SQL can be a part of an application, but when ...

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