There are many databases out there. MySQL is one of the better ones. It's a free (for personal use) database system which can be easily integrated into a web application on virtually any system. It has supports most of the standard feature found in most database system and has quiet a few features unique to MySQL. This particular book is a good reference for the experienced user as well as for new comers and as an added bonus even covers MySQL 4.0.
This is book was my first introduction to O'Reilly's cookbook series. It provides solutions to some of the most common challenged faced by the particular subject being covered (in this case MySQL). I thoroughly enjoyed it and was quiet impressed with it. Too many technical books simply introduce the concept without relating it to real world applications.
This particular book introduces all of the most basic concepts of database manipulation (table creation, data insertion, data deletion, data update). As well as writing simple and advanced SQL statements to retrieve data. It approaches database design using 4 of the most popular languages (Perl, PHP, Python and Java). These are only a few of the many possible languages which can be used to manipulate a MySQL database.
MySQL cookbook touches on a variety of different topics which I don't have the space or time to cover in detail, but here is a list of them:
* Handeling duplicates
* MySQL on the Web
* Processing Web input with MySQL
* Using MySQL-based Web Session Management
One of my favorite topics covered in the book is the idea of storing binary data such as images within a database. Although not ideal for most cases (unless you need fast access to a vast array of images), just the idea of it has a certain kewlness effect.
Well, overall I give it 4 out of 5 stars. It needs to touch slightly more on the basic concepts of databases, and it can become the only book you'll ever need for MySQL.