Difference Between RANK and DENSE_RANK (With Table)

The Standard Query Language helps a programmer in creating a program as per the needs and requirements. In this particular language, RANK and DENSE_RANK are two features that most people tend to use interchangeably, but the truth is that these two are completely different from one another when we look from the depth. 

RANK vs DENSE_RANK 

The difference between RANK and DENSE_RANK is that the former puts a provided data in a particular order where all the quantities that carry a similar number are given a similar rank. A very unique feature is that a rank provides a similar number to similar quantities but skips the next number. But on the other hand, the latter is an identical feature, but it carries the difference that it never skips the next number and a lot ranking in a particular numerical order that happens to be correct in nature. 

RANK in the Standard Query Language can be understood as a feature that allows the programmer to categorize and evaluate a certain set of numbers. This feature provides a particular ranking to all the numbers, and when the same number is repeated, the rank is also repeated with respect to those two numbers. But a very unique characteristic of this feature is that when it allots a similar rank to two or more numbers, it always skips the next number. 

While on the contrary, DENSE_RANK happens to be slightly different from the previous one. DENSE_RANK in the Standard Query Language can be understood as a feature that allows the programmer to categorize certain data without skipping any number even after allowing similar ranks. This characteristic exists as the major distinguishable feature of this element. 

Comparison Table Between RANK and DENSE_RANK 

Parameters of Comparison RANK  DENSE_RANK 
Meaning  It refers to a function available in the language of programming that assists in categorizing different sets of data.  It refers to a function available in the language of programming that assists in categorizing different sets of data without skipping any number.  
Process  The ranking is done by providing different numerical ranks to different numbers. When two numbers happen to be similar, the same rank is given. The dense ranking is done by providing different numerical ranks to different numbers and similar numerical ranks to similar numbers. However, no consecutive number is skipped in this process. 
Purpose  The purpose of this particular function is to analyze the given rank of each and every row. The purpose of this particular function is to analyze the ranks of a particular column and not every row. 
Proper programming name It is written and read as RANK () It is written and read as DENSE_RANK ()  
Number system While performing this function, similar ranks are provided to similar numbers, and every number that follows that particular rank is skipped While performing this function, similar ranks are provided to similar numbers but no number is skipped in the ranking. 

What is RANK? 

In the computer programming language named as standard query language or SQL, rank is a very basic feature that many programmers use to categorize a different set of data. This function allows the user to simplify the provided data and to comprehend the information in a better manner. 

A very unique feature of this function is that when two or more numbers are repeated because of their quantity, a similar rank is provided to them, as explained before. But when this is done, the ranking order skips the next number that follows that particular rank number. 

Let us take an example to understand this. In the span of five years, a company has produced different quantities of rice that are 100KG, 200KG. 300KG, 300KG, 400KG. In this data, the ranking will be 1, 2, 3, 3, 5. it can be seen in this example that the number 4 has been skipped in the order, and this happened cause of the repetition of number 3.  

What is DENSE_RANK? 

DENSE_RANK, as a feature present in the SQL language of programming, happens to be another unique but slightly different feature. While providing a rank, the highest to lowest quantities are categorized and ranked accordingly.  

The quantities that happened to be different from one another are provided different rankings, while the quantities that happened to be similar to one another are provided similar rankings. But unlike rankings, in this particular function, no number is kept while ranking a distinguished set of data. 

Let us take an example for this. In the span of five years, a person has walked a particular distance each and every year. He walked 100 kilometers, 200 kilometers, 300 kilometers, 300 kilometers, 500 kilometers, respectively. The function of dense rank will provide a ranking of 1, 2, 3, 3, 4. the difference is visible as it did not skip the number 4. 

This feature is popular in programming because of its ability to categorize data present in a small column. 

Main Differences Between RANK and DENSE_RANK 

  1. Rank is a function provided in the SQL language that helps the programmer in categorizing a different set of data, but dense rank is another function that does a similar job but without skipping any number. 
  2. The purpose of ranking is to analyze the given rank of each and every room, while the purpose of dense ranking is to analyze the ranks of a particular column only. 
  3. Rank is written as RANK () while dense rank is written as DENSE_RANK (). 
  4. In the ranking, the same rank is provided to similar numbers, but the next number following that particular rank is usually skipped. But in dense ranking, no number is scaped, and the rank follows a particular numerical order. 
  5. The ranking is easy to derive results from a bulk of data, while the dense ranking is suitable for deriving data from a particular set of columns or rows only. 

Conclusion 

As technology is taking over the world day by day, computers and elements related to it have become a very crucial part of human life. A very popular computer language is SQL that stands for the standard query language. This language provides a handful of features that allow the user to categorize a different set of numbers belonging to different quantities.  

Ranking and tense ranking are two prominent features belonging to this language that is widely used all across the world in many computer programs. If not looked at properly, these two features can be considerably confusing with one another as the differences between the two happened to be very minute and difficult to comprehend. 

References 

  1. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-1-4842-5197-3_2 
  2. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-1-4842-7182-7_12  
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