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Resources For Developing Great SQL Scripts

Lets talk about developing some really clean robust SQL scripts. I’ll admit I’m not an Expert when it comes to SQL script writing although I do believe I’m on my way. That’s why I want to go over the resources I tap into when trying to address a challenge using an SQL script.

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The four sources for SQL script development (this probably applies to all programming) can be divided into four categories. Lets just dive right into the first one.

The Skills Within

The first and most obvious source for coming up with a script is your own personal knowledge and existing skills. The first thing I do when trying to address a problem using a script is to sit down and focus my efforts into writing the script with the information from the requirements. I try to think hard and draw upon concepts from college classes and my prior experience script writing. Here’s how we develop our skills within.

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  • Practiced Skills – The more you practice writing scripts and using programming concepts to address challenges, the better you become at script writing. Try to practice SQL queries on a daily basis.
  • Previous Education – All that prior learning and studying you did years ago, (and hopefully still continue) is in there somewhere! Try to keep your mind sharp and relaxed so you can think clearly to program effectively.

Structured Learning

The sources under this category form the foundation for the Skills within we mentioned a second ago. Its important to keep your skills fresh by continuously taking part in the activities below, even if you think you are already an expert.

  • College Courses or Certificate programs – This is a lengthy but rewarding endeavor. Many Programming and technology degrees are in high demand today.
  • Free Online Courses – Free courses are becoming increasingly popular, especially within the realm of IT. Free education websites such as Coursera are teaching a variety of topics and they have plenty to offer programmers and scriptwriters.
  • Ebooks – Digital books make for a convenient reference as you can bring them with you everywhere and mark important pages, tips and tricks. I keep the kindle app on my IPAD, home Mac and work PC with books for SQL and other concepts. You never know when you might need to use one.
  • Physical Books – An oldie but goodie, I prefer physical books to digital because I believe it’s the preferable format for brain retention because they better support our spatial memories.

The Internet

The Internet provides an abundance of information when it comes to problem solving, many resorting to this source before consulting with their own brain. I am occasionally guilty of mindlessly resorting to Google before trying to think for myself.

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  • Blogs
  • Forums
  • Resource Sites

Other Professionals

After exhausting your own brains’ resources and the internet its okay to ask a peer for help. Its also good practice to have your queries reviewed by an experienced SQl writer. The old, very strange saying “There’s more than one way to skin a cat” really rings true when you have an experienced professional suggest a different way to structure your scripts.

Here are some people you can consult with to review your scripts:

  • Database Administrator – Database Administrators have a great deal of experience with SQL by nature of their job and can often enhance your queries or incorporate best practices into your code.
  • Programmers – Getting an SQL programmer or other programmer can bring some fresh expertise to your Code.
  • Analysts – Some analysts are more technical than others but many systems analysts are experienced with writing and analyzing SQL code
  • Vendors- Contact the vendors who created the software, especially if you pay for support. Many times they will have snippets of code that can help you develop your own custom queries or troubleshoot/solve problems

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