SQLZOO- using GROUPBY to find the largest country in a continent; is this possible?

2018-05-25 mysql sql greatest-n-per-group

I'm working on a practice problem from SQLZOO, and am not sure why the solution I'm trying doesn't work as it makes sense to me.

This is the format of the table::

|     name      continent    area    population       gdp     |
| Afghanistan     Asia      652230    25500100    20343000000 |
| .                                                           |
| .                                                           |
| .                                                           |
|                                                             |

The question is the following:

Find the largest country (by area) in each continent, show the continent, the name and the area.

Here is the way I was thinking to solve it:

SELECT continent, name, area FROM world
WHERE name IN (SELECT continent, name, MAX(area) FROM world 
              GROUP BY continent);

I know this doesn't work, but why not? It seems like the nested SELECT statement is finding the country with the MAX area per continent, is it not?

The actual solution for this is something like follows:

SELECT continent, name, area FROM world x
  WHERE area >= ALL
    (SELECT area FROM world y
        WHERE y.continent=x.continent
          AND area>0)

But this seems like a complicated way of coming up with it;; is this way makes the most sense? Any ideas are appreciated

Thank you in advance!!


While at a quick glimpse this query seems works

SELECT continent, name, area 
  FROM world
 WHERE area IN (SELECT MAX(area) 
                  FROM world 
                 GROUP BY continent);

Demo 1

considering the current data, some issues would raise while some other new records added such as in the demo below. Rather than the above prefer this one :

SELECT w1.continent, name, w1.area 
  FROM world AS w1
  JOIN (SELECT continent, MAX(area) AS area
          FROM world 
         GROUP BY continent) AS w2
    ON w1.continent = w2.continent
   AND w1.area = w2.area

Demo 2

select A.continent, W.name, A.area
(select continent, max(area) as area from world group by continent)A, world W
A.continent = W.continent
A.area = W.area