Learning new things

May 20, 2008

I’ve been spending the lions share of my time working on implementing a better, more efficient method for storing our product data. This means my boss tells me a table has everything we could sell ever, but it needs cleaning. So this also means I’ve spent the past couple weeks learning to not fear update and delete queries. They’re the scariest things ever.

It’s also meant restructuring the feeds we create for product comparison sites. I’m pretty sure product comparison sites were created to accelerate growth of gray hair, ulcers, and countless other annoyances that shouldn’t be hitting people in their mid twenties. It seems to me that the sites realize they’re a main source of income for many online retailers, and so they can control what kind of hoops must be covered before a feed goes live. Or whether or not your 12,000 entry csv only has 450 records. I will say, however, that of all of the ones I’ve dealt with, Google base is the most easy to get into. I didn’t have all the fields mapped identically, but they were imported with no problem whatsoever.

So, in a month and a half, I’ve gotten a crash course in Access’ methods for queries, table linking, and filter criteria. It’s nice in that it’s very graphical, anytime you want to link two tables you just gotta drag one field onto its complement in another table. And, thankfully, if you feel silly doing that, there’s a nice way to see the SQL query and actually write it like our nerdy forefathers intended.

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