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Am 07.02.2012 21:57, Jay Lozier wrote:
The irony is that most SQL queries are easier to understand because they
reference tables and columns by name (out of necessity) and usually have
a selection criteria that is makes contextual sense, such as vendor
name. The above is not easy to follow or debug, I know because I do
similar in the past.

SELECT column names
FROM table
WHERE criteria for selection

is easier to follow, even when the query is much more complex

SQL is much closer to human language than spreadsheet formulas. There is no need to test for missing/invalid data since a database does not allow for missing, invalid or inconsistent data. If there is a relation, the look up in the detail table can not fail since you can not use any references to non existing items nor can you delete any items that are referred in other tables. Databases provide much better functionality for text values where Calc does it all wrong.

=IF(A1="";"";IF(AND(ISNUMBER(A1);A1>0);ROUND(A1;2)*VLOOKUP(A1;TaxRates;2)) [and this bullshit has to be copied down to each and every row of the ever growing sales list].

If a database record requires a product price then there can not be an empty value nor text in the price column. If that price is defined as a number between 0.01 and 9,999.99 there won't be any value with more than 2 digits behind the comma and all calculations will use that level of precision without explicit rounding. And a user can not override this "validation" with a simple copy&paste. Nobody has to copy any calculation formula. They are defined by the database designer for the entire field. A spreadsheet has no records nor fields, not even tables. Tables with records and fields are only in the head of the user when he uses rectangles of cells as if they were organized like this. In fact you can use a sheet of cells beyond these rigid concepts.

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