## Descriptive Statistics: Calculating the Mean in Various Data Series

The mean (average) is one of the most valuable and most frequently used measures in descriptive statistics. Why is it so widely used, and why is it important to know how to calculate the arithmetic mean? Perhaps the most convincing argument is that the mean is used in virtually every area of life. With the arithmetic mean, you can calculate the average daily television viewing time for citizens of a given country, average volume of coffee drunk by a typical American, average annual temperature in your city, or the average amount you spend on food in a typical week.

## Spooky Scary NULL: Unexpected Danger Lurking in Your Database

Relational databases often store the value NULL in their tables. If you’re not familiar with NULL and what it is, you could run into unexpected problems. In this article, we’ll take a look at how the IN and EXISTS operators work with NULL. What Is NULL? In SQL, NULL is a special value indicating that a particular piece of data doesn’t exist in the database. For SQL beginners, it’s often a source of problems.

## Most Popular SQL Interview Questions for Business Analysts

-- SQL is an extremely desirable skill for anyone in today’s market—not just those in the IT sector. It’s becoming increasingly common for employers to require at least a basic knowledge of SQL in professions related to finance, statistics, banking, and business analytics. In this article, we will focus on the SQL interview questions for business analyst (BA) positions that appear at job interviews most often.

## Why Is SQL Worth Learning?

Nowadays, data is gathered from a variety of sources, and information is of great value to organizations. However, with an increasing amount of data comes the need for databases that can store information for retrieval and analysis by trained specialists. That’s where Structured Query Language comes in. Is SQL worth learning? In this article, I’ll explain why it definitely is. Relational databases, which logically group information into chunks, are basically used to store and organize large amounts of data.

## Learn SQL Views in 30 Minutes

Views aren’t complicated – if you’ve got half an hour, we’ll get you started writing SQL queries using views! Let’s start by answering the question “What is a view in SQL?’. A view is a database object (as is a table, an index, or a stored procedure). Like a table, you can query a view and extract the information in it. It can be used in the FROM clause of a SELECT, and you can reference view columns in clauses like SELECT, WHERE and GROUP BY among other clauses as well.

## How to Organize SQL Queries with CTEs

Common table expressions (CTEs) allow you to structure and organize SQL queries. Knowing how to organize SQL queries is a necessity when you begin to move deeper into SQL, so if you want to become an SQL master, you need to know CTEs. The SQL CTE has been part of standard SQL for some time now. CTEs – which are also called WITH statements – are available in all major RDBMS.

## SQL Window Functions By Explanation

In our previous post, we explained how SQL window functions work by example. We started with some very simple, basic functions. Let’s extend it by explaining subclauses in window functions. SQL window functions are a great way to compute results from a set of rows rather than a single row. As you know from our first article, the “window” in window function refers to the set of rows.

## Long SQL Query vs. Recursive SQL Query

Recursion is one of the central ideas in computer science. We can define it as a method for solving problems where the solution of the problem depends on solving a smaller instance of a problem. If this sounds complicated do not fret, in this article we will learn about recursion in SQL that you can practice and deepen in Vertabelo Academy. Recursion is a way of solving hierarchical problems we find in data with common SQL.

## High Performance Statistical Queries: Linear Dependencies Between Continuous Variables

In my previous articles, I dealt with analyses of only a single variable. Now it is time to check whether two variables of interest are independent or somehow related. For example, a person’s height positively correlates with shoe size. Taller people have larger shoe sizes, and shorter people have smaller shoe sizes. You can find this and many more examples of positive associations at: http://examples.yourdictionary.com/positive-correlation-examples.html. A negative association is also possible.

## An Illustrated Guide to Multiple Join

So far, our articles in the “An Illustrated Guide” series have explained several join types: INNER JOINs, OUTER JOINs (LEFT JOIN, RIGHT JOIN, FULL JOIN), CROSS JOIN, self-join and non-equi join. In this final article of the series, we show you how to create SQL queries that match data from multiple tables using one or more join types. Join Types in SQL Queries Before we start discussing example SQL queries that use multiple join types, let’s do a short recap of the join types we’ve covered so far, just to be sure you understand the differences.

## An Illustrated Guide to the SQL Non Equi Join

Did you know that in SQL, a join doesn’t have to be based on identical matches? In this post, we look at the SQL non equi join, which uses ‘non-equal’ operators to match records. We’ve already discussed several types of joins, including self joins and CROSS JOIN, INNER JOIN and OUTER JOIN. These types of joins typically appear with the equals sign (=). However, some joins use conditions other than the equals (=) sign.

## An Illustrated Guide to the SQL Self Join

What is an SQL self join and how does it work? When should it be used? We’ll provide answers to those questions! In SQL, we can combine data from multiple tables by using a JOIN operator. JOIN has several variants; we’ve already discussed CROSS JOIN, INNER JOIN, and OUTER JOIN. Most of the time, these operators join data from two or more different tables. In this article, however, we will explain how to join records from the same table.

## So You Want to Be a Data Scientist?

A career in data science is hot right now. What is a data scientist, and how can you become one? Very few of us said “I want to grow up to be a data scientist” when we were kids. But now, in the age of Big Data and economic uncertainty, a career in data science is looking mighty attractive. If you like the idea of working with information and earning a good paycheck, read on.

## SQL Cheat Sheet for Basic and Advanced SQL Users

Everyone, from rookie programmers to SQL ninjas, needs a bit of help now and again. Enter Vertabelo's SQL Cheat Sheet! Working with databases is hard. There's a lot of data to manage, which can be daunting. But the main challenge many database users face is the SQL commands themselves. It's all right when you're using the same familiar ones day after day, but what about the commands you dust off once or twice a year?

## Data Science: Market Demand or Just Hype?

Earth’s 7.5 billion people together use several billion different devices, generating an annual global IP traffic of more than one zettabyte. Out of these impressive numbers rises a new field above the others — “data science”. Is data science an inevitable reality, or will it yet be dismissed as just another “wave of the future” that never came to be? A few days ago I signed a new employment contract with my company.

## The 5 Highest Paying Jobs That Use SQL

IT provides a wide and growing job market, offering many excellent opportunities in both career development and earning potential. Today we’ll take a look at several very interesting types of database jobs that use SQL. Every year, many in the work force set their sights and aim for new and better jobs. When it comes to jobs, “better” means different things to different people, but earning potential is almost always a top priority.

## How to Track Down Duplicate Values in a Table

When it comes to information management, duplicates present one of the most common challenges to data quality. In this article, I’ll explain how it is possible to find and distinguish duplicate names with the help of the SQL data programming language. I really like my maiden name. The reason I like it so much is because it’s rare. My maiden name (first with last) provided a unique identifier on platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and similar.

## Common SQL Window Functions: Positional Functions

Positional SQL window functions deal with data’s location in the set. In this post, we explain LEAD, LAG, and other positional functions. SQL window functions allow us to aggregate data while still using individual row values. We’ve already dealt with ranking functions and the use of partitions. In this post, we’ll examine positional window functions, which are extremely helpful in reporting and summarizing data. Specifically, we’ll look at LAG, LEAD, FIRST_VALUE and LAST_VALUE.

## Four Reasons You Must Learn SQL in Data Science

Is SQL important for data science? It certainly is! This language can help you build a foundation for your analytical career. Let’s see how you use SQL in data science. Data science is hot right now. What if you could predict the next market crash? Or contain the spread of Ebola? Or accurately predict a health crisis months or even years before it happens? Data scientists are working hard on these kinds of projects, and they are earning healthy salaries in the process.

## Kill Online Distractions: 5 Tools to Help You Stay Focused

Phones, emails, social media accounts, and about a hundred other things are constantly competing for our attention. Can tech tools help us stay focused? A lot of apps say that they help humans work better and faster. But the truth is that the more interactive tools we use, the more focus-shattering notifications we get. In many ways, technology has gotten us into this problem. Can it help us get out of it?

## Kill Online Distractions: 5 Tools to Help You Stay Focused

Phones, emails, social media accounts, and about a hundred other things are constantly competing for our attention. Can tech tools help us stay focused? A lot of apps say that they help humans work better and faster. But the truth is that the more interactive tools we use, the more focus-shattering notifications we get. In many ways, technology has gotten us into this problem. Can it help us get out of it?

## SQL Mythbuster – 5 Reasons Why No One Should Be Afraid of SQL

Anyone can learn SQL. It’s not as hard as you think! In today’s world, even those in non-technical jobs need some technical skills. And you don’t have to be a hard-core nerd to get these skills. Let me tell you my own story. A few years ago, I wasn’t considering learning SQL or anything else that I labelled “technical”. My background is in sociology, journalism, and scriptwriting, and I thought computer languages were pretty sci-fi.

## Referential Constraints and Foreign Keys in MySQL

Foreign keys and referential constraints allow you to set relationships between tables and modify some of the database engine’s actions. This beginner’s guide explains referential integrity and foreign key use in MySQL. One of the most important aspects of database usage is being able to trust the information you store. Database engines provide several features that help you maintain the quality of your data, like defining required columns as NOT NULL and setting an exact data type for each column.

## An Illustrated Guide to the SQL OUTER JOIN

We’ve already discussed the SQL CROSS JOIN and INNER JOIN statements. It’s time to explore another: OUTER JOIN. What is it? How does it work? Let’s find out! If you’ve read our other posts, you know that you can link the data in two or more database tables using one of the many types of SQL join operator. Today, we’ll discuss the three kinds of OUTER JOIN: LEFT OUTER JOIN, RIGHT OUTER JOIN, and FULL OUTER JOIN.

## Jane Solves Her Business Analysis Problem

Jane has a data problem and an overdue report. Will SQL save the day? Jane works as a business analyst for a large London bank. As she walks to the station on Monday morning, she’s thinking about last week’s unfinished work. She couldn’t get the data she needed from IT, so she could not deliver her report on a financial product’s non-performing assets. She absolutely must submit the report to her manager today; she’s already delayed it for more than a week.

## Common SQL Window Functions: Using Partitions With Ranking Functions

You’ve started your mastery of SQL window functions by learning RANK, NTILE, and other basic functions. In this article, we will explain how to use SQL partitions with ranking functions. Mastering SQL window functions (AKA analytical functions) is a bumpy road, but it helps to break the journey into logical stages that build on each other. In the previous Common SQL Functions article, you learned about the various rank functions, which are the most basic form of window functions.

## Common SQL Window Functions: Using Partitions with Ranking Functions

You’ve started your mastery of SQL window functions by learning RANK, NTILE, and other basic functions. In this article, we will explain how to use SQL partitions with ranking functions. Mastering SQL window (or analytical) functions is a bumpy road, but it helps to break the journey into logical stages that build on each other. In the previous Common SQL Functions article, you learned about the various rank functions, which are the most basic form of window functions.

## SQL Window Function Example With Explanations

Interested in how window functions work? Scroll down to see our SQL window function example with definitive explanations! SQL window functions are a bit different; they compute their result based on a set of rowsrather than on a single row. In fact, the “window” in “window function” refers to that set of rows. Window functions are similar to aggregate functions, but there is one important difference. When we use aggregate functions with the GROUP BY clause, we “lose” the individual rows.

## How Recursive Common Table Expressions Work

Recursive Common Table Expressions are immensely useful when you’re querying hierarchical data. Let’s explore what makes them work. Common Table Expressions (CTEs) are some of the most useful constructions in SQL. Their main purpose is improving query design, which makes queries easier to read. One of the reasons CTEs are so popular is that they let you divide longer queries into shorter subqueries. These are easier to read and edit.

## Opening the Door to SQL Window Functions

When you want to analyze data in a database, you need SQL window functions. What are they? How do they work? Read on to find out. There are two ways people use databases. One way is for the creation, modification and deletion of data. The other is analyzing the data, which means getting answers to specific questions. The more precise the questions you ask, the more tools you’ll need to answer them efficiently.

## High Performance Statistical Queries –Skewness and Kurtosis

In descriptive statistics, the first four population moments include center, spread, skewness, and kurtosis or peakedness of a distribution. In this article, I am explaining the third and fourth population moments, the skewness and the kurtosis, and how to calculate them. Mean uses the values on the first degree in the calculation; therefore, it is the first population moment. Standard deviation uses the squared values and is therefore the second population moment.

## An Illustrated Guide to the SQL INNER JOIN

What is an SQL INNER JOIN, and how does it work? Let’s find out! In my last article, I discussed the CROSS JOIN operation in SQL. Today, we’ll look at INNER JOIN and how to use it. Is it the same as a JOIN? How many tables can you link with an INNER JOIN? These are all good questions. Let’s look at the answers! What is an INNER JOIN? INNER JOIN combines data from multiple tables by joining them based on a matching record.

## How to Use Rank Functions in SQL

Learning about SQL window functions usually comes after you’ve built a foundation in the language, but these powerful functions take your skills up a level. As you master them, you’ll find better ways to solve query problems. When used for business intelligence applications, SQL queries combine data retrieval and advanced computations. These operations are more complex than those used in OLTP systems. In fact, the SQL standard was expanded with analytical functions specifically to support this kind of activity.

## 5 Documentaries for People Who Love the Internet

Here’s a shock: not everything in the movies is true. But these five documentaries offer interesting insights into the Internet and its people. Non-tech people tend to consider coding, hacking, and anything remotely dev-y as mysterious and magical processes. This myth is helped along by the movie industry, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Movie watchers generally like thrilling, action-packed stories, and coding can be anything but exciting. But not every good movie needs to be filled with action; some get our brains going by presenting new ideas or interesting viewpoints.

## SQL Statistical Analysis Part 3: Measuring Spread of Distribution

Besides knowing the centers of a distribution in your data, you need to know how varied the observations are. In this article, we’ll explain how to find the spread of a distribution in SQL. Are you dealing with a very uniform or a very spread population? To really understand what the numbers are saying, you must know the answer to this question. In the second part of this series, we discussed how to calculate centers of distribution.

## An Illustrated Guide to the SQL CROSS JOIN

What is an SQL CROSS JOIN statement? When should you use it? When shouldn’t you use it? This post will tell you what you need to know about CROSS JOIN. You already know that you can use the SQL JOIN statement to join one or more tables that share a matching record. And if you’re read the Vertabelo Academy post Learning SQL JOINs Using Real Life Situations, you know that there are many types of JOINs.

## An Introduction to Using SQL Aggregate Functions with JOINs

-- -- Previously, we've discussed the use of SQL aggregate functions with the GROUP BY statement. Regular readers of the Vertabelo Academy blog will also remember our recent tutorial about JOINs. If you're a bit rusty on either subject, I encourage you to review them before continuing this article. That's because we will dig further into aggregate functions by pairing them with JOINs.

## Why I Choose Learning Apps … And You Should Too

Learning from books is so 1999. Can app-based learning do any better? Do you like wasting your time? I don’t. Any time I start something, I find out how to do it efficiently. For me, this means learning new skills using apps and online learning rather than books. Online and app-based learning focuses on you, the student. This is the exact opposite of traditional learning, which is teacher-driven. There is a physical classroom and students, but the teacher plays the primary role.

## A Beginner’s Guide to SQL Aggregate Functions

Aggregate functions are powerful SQL tools that compute numerical calculations on data, allowing the query to return summarized information about a given column or result set. These functions can be used in conjunction with the GROUP BY statement. Let’s see how they work using some easy examples. SQL Aggregate Functions Suppose we have users residing in a city, and we store their information in two tables. These tables and their relationship are shown below:

## Introducing SQL Set Operators: Union, Union All, Minus, and Intersect

-- -- -- -- -- Ever heard terms such as union and intersection in SQL? They’re examples of set operators, and they come in handy when you need to combine information from multiple tables or queries. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at them. SQL queries let us choose the most important bits from large amounts of information.

## Useful SQL Patterns: Date Generator

As you start coding in SQL, you will use some statements and techniques over and over again. We call these “SQL patterns”. This series will look at the most common SQL patterns and consider how to use them. SQL patterns, such as the pivot pattern we discussed last week, can save you a lot of time and effort. Suppose you are asked to get a range of days in a financial quarter, but the only records you have are for the start and end dates of each quarter.

## Useful SQL Patterns: Pivoting

As you start coding in SQL, you will use some statements and techniques over and over again. We call these “SQL patterns”. This series will look at the most common SQL patterns and consider how to use them. The concept of pivot in SQL refers to taking the data in table rows and making that data into columns. This is very important in reporting, and it’s easy to do when you use the CASE statement.

## Learning JOINs With Real World SQL Examples

-- The JOIN statement lets you work with data stored in multiple tables. In this article, I’ll walk you through the topic of JOIN clauses using real world SQL examples. Imagine if you could only work with one database table at a time. Fortunately, this isn’t anything we have to worry about. Once you learn the JOIN statement, you can start linking data together.

## Useful SQL Patterns: Conditional Summarization with CASE

As you start coding in SQL, you will use some statements and techniques over and over again. We call these “SQL patterns”. This series will look at the most common SQL patterns and consider how to use them. Previously, we looked at the SQL pattern of matching NULLs. This is important when you are comparing columns containing NULL values. Today, we’re going to consider another SQL practice: conditional summarization with CASE operator.

## Using CASE with Data Modifying Statements

What happens when you combine CASE with SQL’s data modifying statements? Find out in this article. The CASE expression is a very useful part of SQL and one that you’ll employ frequently. We’ve already covered what the CASE expression does, how to format it, and how to use it in a SELECT statement in “Using CASE to Add Logic to a SELECT”. Another article, “How to Sort Records with the ORDER BY Clause” demonstrated how to use CASE in an ORDER BY clause.

## FROM: A Clause with Plenty of Possibilities

Think that FROM only specifies tables in an SQL statement? Think again … When I first began to work with SQL, I saw the FROM clause as the simplest part of any query. You’d put only one table there, or may be two or more tables in the case of a join. That was all I thought about the FROM clause in those days. As I began to learn more about SQL, I discovered that there are a lot of techniques that can be used in a FROM.

## Useful SQL Patterns: Matching Nulls by Masking Nulls

As you start coding in SQL, you will use some statements and techniques over and over again. We call these “SQL patterns”. This series will look at the most common SQL patterns and consider how to use them. In database development, SQL developers often find themselves returning to the same SQL statements. Learning about these now, early in your SQL journey, will help you work more efficiently. Today, in the first post of this series, we will consider the match by null SQL pattern related to SQL data matching.

## Using Transactions to Prevent Database Errors

What happens when a database receives commands from two different users? We look at the problems that can arise and how to avoid them. Every time you execute a statement in your database, you change the database’s state. When working in a multi-user environment with asynchronous database access, it will sometimes happen that two users are trying to change the same record at the same time. If both of their statements is an operation that changes the database’s state, this can create erroneous results.

## How to Sort Records with the ORDER BY Clause

Relational databases don’t store records in alphabetical, numerical, ascending, or in any particular order. The only way to order records in the result set is to use the ORDER BY clause. You can use this clause to order rows by a column, a list of columns, or an expression. You can also order rows using the CASE expression. In this post, we’ll take a look at the ORDER BY clause – how to write it, how it works, and what it does.

## Oracle Top-N Queries for Absolute Beginners

It’s common to run a query using only part of a dataset – for example, the top 100 salespeople in a company. In this article, we’ll see how to use Oracle’s Top-N query method to query just these rows. Top-N queries retrieve a defined number of rows (top or bottom) from a result set. In other words, they find the best or worst of something – the ten best selling cars in a certain region, the five most popular routers, the 20 worst-performing stores, etc.

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