Paperback: 840 pages
Publisher: For Dummies; 1 edition (October 10, 2003)
Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.9 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #536,850 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #121 in Books > Computers & Technology > Databases & Big Data > Access #147 in Books > Computers & Technology > Software > Databases #590 in Books > Textbooks > Computer Science > Database Storage & Design
I started a new job in the Information Reporting Office of a State Education Department. I am fluent in SPSS programming, but have had little experience with Access. My job turns out to entail retrieving many data files in an Access format from a master database stored in Oracle on a mainframe using ODBC. I have had to learn quickly how to manipulate those databases to obtain the information needed to put into files for Federal reporting purposes. I needed a comprehensive reference to Access that would allow me to learn how to use Access to perform data manipulations that are easy to perform with Statistical Analysis packages such as SPSS. For example, every School is assigned a 12-digit code, and each sequence of two or four digits embedded in the code has a distinct meaning, such as a reference to the county of location or type of school. So I had to learn quickly how to "parse" the long "string" field into new separate string fields made up of the component parts of the 12-digit string. I also needed to aggregate data on field values to obtain counts and sums. These are basic functions, easy to look up or find in the index when using a program like SPSS. These sorts of functions do have counterparts in Access, but the indexes of such books are geared to the business user and do not refer to such functions with the standard terms such as "parse," "string function," or "aggregate" that are familiar to people used to using statistical packages to manipulate data. I looked at many older Access reference books in our office. I ordered the Alison Balter "Mastering Microsoft Office Access 2003" book from after reading the reviews. I was not able to find what I needed to learn from those books.
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