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Basic Aggregation functions
While the SQL*Plus compute command can be used to summarize data, there are times when we want to see summary information in the result sets of our SQL output.  The relational model offers the following basic aggregation functions:
  • Sum
  • Avg
  • Min
  • Max
For example, if we want to see the sum of all sales for a title, we can issue the following query against the pubs database:
natural join
group by
Using the same query, we can substitute the sum function for the avg function and see the average sales by author.  Note the use of the group by operator.  The group by operator is required whenever a sum of avg aggregation is specified inside any sql query.  The rule is that all column data except for the column being summed or averaged must appear inside the group by clause.
The min and max functions are used to return single-row result sets from the database.  For example, to find the largest sale, we could issue this SQL query:
select max(quantity) from sales;
More commonly, the min and max functions are used to insert rows into other tables.  For example:
insert into
(name, max_credit)
    (‘Sam’, select max(credit)
            credit_table where name = ‘SAM’);



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