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Building the Agile Database: How to Build a Successful Application Using Agile Without Sacrificing Data Management by Larry Burns

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Functions (also called user-defined functions) are a special type of database object. Like stored procedures, they can accept parameter values, execute procedural code, and return either single values or rowsets. However, functions that return rowsets (called “table-valued” functions) can be treated just like views, and can even be included in table joins.

There are two types of functions: table-valued, which return rowsets, and scalar-valued, which return a single atomic value (such as an integer or a character string). Aggregate functions, such as the min, max, sum, and count SQL functions, are a special class of scalar-valued functions.

Scalar-valued functions are useful for doing on-the-fly data conversions and lookups, such as ...

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