Published: Fri 04 February 2011
Book Reviews Mysql Python
Author: Albert Lukaszewski
MySQL for Python is a good book for any beginning to intermediate Python
programmers who want or need to get their minds and hands on a crash
course in SQL programming and MySQL administration.
I base the opinion above on the fact that I am someone who is
comfortable with Python, but does not code in it often during my job. I
am also someone who can work his way around a MySQL database without
having to research every SQL command; my knowledge of Python and MySQL
is functional, but not expert.
The book’s format is one that I would think someone who didn't know what
they were doing with MySQL would find helpful. Each chapter is dedicated
to performing a certain set of MySQL tasks; for example Chapter 7 is
titled “Creating and Dropping” (as in tables). The chapter opens with a
quick discussion about what information the chapter is supposed to
convey. Then it moves on to which commands one will use in MySQL to
perform the desired tasks. After these commands are discussed, the book
then goes into how to perform the same commands in Python. Each chapter
ends with a project that is supposed to challenge the reader to create
something that exemplifies the chapter's topic.
One area where I find the book lacking is that there is no mention of
Python3 or the changes that one's code would require to make it
compatible with Python3 vs Python. For example, there are a couple of
code examples in the book that heavily rely on the function xrange().
Not that xrange() is bad function to use, but that particular function
doesn’t exist in Python 3. I could theorize that maybe the author didn’t
want to complicate the idea of using Python as a tool to learning SQL,
but it does limit the amount of time that the content stays relevant.
A part of the book that I did find quite good was the quick and easily
understandable explanation of the various join functions in Chapter 13.
Although the descriptions were a little short, the brevity was
acceptable because of the included Venn diagrams to help illustrate the
how the joins worked logically. This was a great touch for helping
someone learn these concepts; it was also the first time I’ve seen Venn
diagrams used to teach someone about joins.
I recognize I might have been overly harsh on this book review, but that
doesn’t mean I wouldn’t recommend it for the right person. I feel the
right person for this is someone who is already comfortable with Python
and wants to expand their knowledge to include the basics of MySQL
administration and SQL programming.