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  • Writer's pictureHassan del Campo

The SQL is Never Better than the First

comparison of the old and the new, microsoft excel vs sql

The SQL is Never Better than the First

The biggest risk is that the sequel to a movie will fail to capture the nostalgia of the original.

I received a rejection email from a program that said I wouldn't be advancing to phase two. The reason they gave was direct and humble - I didn't complete enough of the coursework compared to the other students, and therefore, that was the defining factor. But, I was praised for my contributions to the weekly Zoom classes, of which they claimed enhanced the learning experience for the students. I agree with both claims.

This week I began my deeper dive into SQL. I reinstated my Treehouse subscription and started from the beginning. I'm doing this while also learning more advanced SQL in the Data Analysis course I started months ago. My goal is to be brilliant with the basics so that my subsequent learning is constructed on a strong foundation. Practically speaking, I should be learning SQL - as the type of work I seek prioritizes that skill. However, many businesses do business in Excel, To be fluent in Excel (which I look at as the predecessor to SQL) is a skill that often gets looked over in the conversations of which language is the popular, "new kid on the block". Is it Python or R? Is Scala making a comeback? Who knows. My conclusion is that Excel and SQL will always be in the data scientist's toolbox (or at least will outlive most languages as far as application). Because of this realization, I've also decided to start a course in Excel.

Excel can be intimidating but after introductory courses in SQL and R I feel more confident in brushing up on my Excel skills. It also has made me realize how powerful the program is at manipulating data and manifesting charts and graphs. Additionally, there's a sense of comfort - as I've used Excel casually, but frequently since my university days. Now I'm returning with intent. And in doing so have gained an appreciation for it. Is it challenging? Yes. But, I believe the best way to overcome the intimidation of something challenging is to face it head-on.

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