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Procedural Language/Structured Query Language

Definition

Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL) is a programming language developed by Oracle Corporation designed for database management. It blends procedural constructs, like loops and conditions, with SQL, the standard language for accessing and manipulating databases. Hence, it allows the user to process SQL commands through procedural language flows.

Phonetic

The phonetic pronunciation of “Procedural Language/Structured Query Language” is:Procedural Language: pruh-see-jer-uhl lang-gwijStructured Query Language: struhk-cherd kwir-ee lang-gwij

Key Takeaways

<html><body><ol><li>Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL) is an extension of SQL, developed by Oracle Corporation. It embraces SQL with procedural features of programming languages, enabling highly efficient and versatile data manipulation.</li><li>PL/SQL supports features like conditional testing, looping and exception handling, and allows encapsulation (procedures and functions), making it excellent for creating complex and large-scale business applications.</li><li>PL/SQL allows users to write code in a procedural format, enabling SQL’s power and simplicity in terms of data access. This leads to a seamless blending of modern software engineering features with a reliable database technology.</li></ol></body></html>

Importance

The term Procedural Language/Structured Query Language, often abbreviated as PL/SQL, is a critical aspect of programming tasks, particularly in Oracle-based software environments. This oracle proprietary programming language tightly integrates with SQL, resulting in a harmonized highly efficient procedural language that can process SQL commands. PL/SQL is important because it enhances the capabilities of SQL by incorporating procedural constructs like loops and conditions, thus allowing for complex business logic to be encapsulated within database queries. Furthermore, PL/SQL allows users to create standalone procedures and functions, or even complex packages, which enhance code reusability and maintainability. This presents an effective way to handle large amounts of data, minimizes network traffic, and boosts application performance. Therefore, it’s a significant contributor to effective and efficient database management and web application development.

Explanation

Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL) is a procedural extension of SQL, designed for seamless processing of SQL commands. Its main purpose is to bridge the gap between database technology and procedural programming languages. It allows users to write procedural code that can be stored directly in the database, allowing enhanced control over the execution of SQL commands. Manipulating and processing the database is made easier and more efficient with PL/SQL as it allows SQL commands to be included within procedural structures such as loops and conditionals.PL/SQL further extends the capability of SQL by introducing more advanced data processing features, like error handling, encapsulation, data hiding, and object-oriented data types. It enables users to create applications that execute transaction-oriented operations. This makes PL/SQL particularly versatile for tasks like creating and managing stored procedures, triggers and packages in the database, which increases the overall efficiency and speed of interaction with the database. PL/SQL is widely used in Oracle Database management systems, making it an essential tool for developers and administrators working within these environments.

Examples

1. Oracle Database: Oracle’s database uses Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL), which is a procedural language extension for SQL. Developers utilize this in the Oracle Database for data-manipulation tasks, triggering responses to specific data-related events, delivering efficient processing commands, and handling errors during data operations.2. Postgres PL/pgSQL: PostgreSQL uses PL/pgSQL, its native procedural language, which closely resembles Oracle’s PL/SQL. Developers can use this to write complex procedures, triggers, or user-defined functions, enabling better data manipulation and control within the database.3. MySQL Stored Procedures: MySQL uses Stored Procedures written in procedural SQL. These procedures encapsulate complex SQL queries into a single command, making them easier to manage, execute, and reuse. These stored procedures are commonly used to perform complex calculations, data validation, or data updates that would be difficult or inefficient to perform using only standard SQL syntax.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

Sure, here is a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section for the technology term: Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL):Q: What is Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL)?A: PL/SQL is a procedural extension of SQL, developed by Oracle Corporation. It can be used to write full-fledged programs that include loops, conditions, and exceptions.Q: How is PL/SQL different from SQL?A: Where SQL is a language used for relational database management systems, PL/SQL builds onto SQL, adding the procedural capabilities of programming languages in handling logic, control statements, and error management.Q: Why use PL/SQL?A: Its usage can lead to increased productivity, full portability, tight integration with SQL, and higher performance. It allows you to encapsulate and process bulk data all in one block, saving time and resources.Q: What’s the basic structure of a PL/SQL program?A: A typical PL/SQL program will have a declarative section, an execution section, and an exception-handling section.Q: Can PL/SQL run on all Oracle platforms?A: Yes, PL/SQL is platform-independent, so you can run it on all existing Oracle platforms.Q: What is a PL/SQL block?A: A PL/SQL block is the fundamental unit of PL/SQL, with a section for declarations, executable commands, and exception handling.Q: What data types can you use in PL/SQL?A: You can use a variety of data types in PL/SQL, including types such as NUMBER, VARCHAR2, DATE, BOOLEAN, and CHAR, among others.Q: Are there any drawbacks to PL/SQL?A: Some potential downsides would be: It’s only available in Oracle, hence, not portable to other databases. Also, simple queries might be slower in PL/SQL than in SQL. Q: How can I debug a PL/SQL code?A: Oracle provides a DBMS_DEBUG package that allows developers to debug their PL/SQL code.Q: Can I declare a variable anywhere in PL/SQL?A: Variables must be declared in the declaration section of the PL/SQL Block. They cannot be declared in the middle of the execution section.

Related Tech Terms

  • Database
  • Queries
  • Relational Database Management System (RDBMS)
  • SQL Statements
  • Data Manipulation Language (DML)

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