SQL vs MySQL – what’s the difference?
Data is a critical element in the world of software and software development. In the modern world, nearly everything runs on data. Therefore, it is important that we have the tools and resources we need to navigate, analyse, and explore that data whenever we need to.
Two major components of data analysis are SQL and MySQL. Despite having nearly identical names, they are two different things that serve two distinct purposes. Knowing the difference between the two is key to understanding how to work with data effectively.
In this blog, we are going to outline what both SQL and MySQL are, how they are similar, and how they are different.
What is SQL?
SQL pre-dates MySQL and so we will start with a definition of it first. SQL stands for Structured Query Language and is a type of programming language used to navigate data in a database. SQL has been the official standard of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for this function since the 80s and it is the primary programming language used to perform functions with data.
SQL allows users to execute tasks such as “SEARCH”, “DELETE”, “MODIFY”, “UPDATE”, “RETRIEVE”, and so on. It is the standard language used to navigate all relational database management systems which means learning SQL allows a person to work with many different sets of data in different companies and projects.
Working with SQL is an essential practice for many roles with a software development company, including software developers, analysts, and data engineers.
What is MySQL?
In contrast, MySQL is an open-source relational database management system. It is a system that uses SQL to allow users to navigate the data stored within it and perform functions as described above. It also has a feature called MySQL Workbench that allows users to create, design and build their own databases.
As MySQL is a piece of open-source software, it receives regular updates and changes throughout time. Users can change the source code to their requirements and they can use plug-in storage applications in tandem with the server. It is a flexible and adaptable software that allows developers, analysts, engineers, and so on to work with data in an organised and accessible way. Data can be stored and organised within MySQL and then migrated to other platforms to fulfil its purpose.