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Oracle Application Express 3.2 - The Essentials and More

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Arie Geller, Matthew Lyon

Develop Native Oracle database-centric web applications quickly and easily with Oracle APEX with this book and eBook
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Book Details

ISBN 139781847194527
Paperback644 pages

About This Book

  • Grasp the principles behind APEX to develop efficient and optimized data-centric native web applications, for the Oracle environment
  • Gain a better understanding of the major principles and building blocks of APEX, like the IDE and its modules
  • Review APEX-related technologies like HTML and the DOM, CSS, and JavaScript, which will help you to develop better, richer, and more efficient APEX applications
  • Learn to Globalize APEX applications, including Right-To-Left support
  • This book covers APEX version 3.2, but the information is broadly applicable to all 3.x

Who This Book Is For

This book is for developers, in general, and web developers, in particular, who wish to learn how to develop data-centric web applications in the Oracle environment. It is also for novice APEX developers, who wish to learn how to use and best utilize the APEX environment, as well as for more experience APEX developers who wish to improve their knowledge and understanding of APEX and its capabilities, and learn from the experience of others.

It assumes basic knowledge of HTML, SQL, and PL/SQL. Basic JavaScript understanding is an advantage, and in general can make your life much easier as an APEX developer.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: An Introduction to APEX
Web-based
Native Web based
Data Centric
A declarative development tool
RAD tool
Globalization, localization, and NLS
APEX architecture
Summary
Chapter 2: What we need to know to effectively use APEX
SQL and PL/SQL
HTML and CSS
JavaScript
HTML
CSS
JavaScript
Summary
Chapter 3: APEX Basic Concepts
Session state
Substitution strings
Shortcuts
Themes and templates
The f?p URL notation
APEX multi-lingual support
Summary
Chapter 4: The Application Builder Basic Concepts and Building Blocks
The APEX Workspace
Start working with APEX
The APEX IDE home page
The APEX Application Builder
The Page component
Summary
Chapter 5: APEX Items
Naming conventions and rules
Application items
Page items
APEX pre-defined item types
Summary
Chapter 6: APEX Buttons
Button styles
Button positioning
Create new button(s)
Edit a button
The REQUEST feature
Using JavaScript with "among this region's items" buttons
Re-visit the Buttons section
Summary
Chapter 7: APEX Computations
Create a page level computation
Create an application level computation
Edit computations
Computations and Session State
Summary
Chapter 8: APEX Validations
Data validation
How APEX validation works?
Creating a new validation
Edit validations
Client-side validation
Summary
Chapter 9: APEX Processes
Application Processes
Page level processes
On Demand processes
Summary
Chapter 10: APEX Branches
Application flow
Creating a new branch
Edit branch
Other ways to control the application flow
Summary
Chapter 11: APEX SQL Workshop
Navigating around the SQL workshop
Object Browser
SQL Commands
SQL Scripts
Query Builder
Summary
Chapter 12: APEX Forms
Sources for creating a form
Creating a new form
A new form has been created
Manually creating an APEX form
Summary
Chapter 13: APEX Reports
Report regions
Creating a simple report using a wizard
Modifying a report manually
Charts
Summary
Chapter 14: Tabular Forms
What is a Tabular Form?
Using a wizard to create a Tabular Form
Manually building a Tabular Form
Summary
Chapter 15: Calendars
Calendar region
Using a wizard to create a calendar
Modifying a calendar manually
Summary
Chapter 16: Interactive Reports
Interactive Report Regions
Converting an Existing Report Region
Create an Interactive Report using a wizard
Manually modifying an Interactive Report
Linking to Interactive Reports
Summary
Chapter 17: AJAX with APEX
The AJAX technology
AJAX implementation in APEX
Examples of using AJAX in APEX
Summary
Chapter 18: Globalization and Localization With APEX Applications
A brief introduction to Globalization and Localization
Native IDE support of multiple languages
Multi-language support
Multi-lingual applications
Summary
Chapter 19: Right-To-Left Support in APEX
Why we need special Right-To-Left support
Basic Right-To-Left scenarios
APEX templates with Right-To-Left support
The APEX Shuttle item
Labels and input fields alignment
Date and time
Summary
Chapter 20: Deploying APEX Applications
What do we need to deploy?
Supporting Objects
Exporting an Application
Exporting a page
Exporting components
Importing an application
Command line export utility
Summary
Chapter 21: The APEX Runtime Environment
What is the APEX Runtime Environment?
Setting up a Runtime Environment
Managing the APEX Runtime Environment
Summary
Chapter 22: Security
APEX security features overview
Authentication Schemes
Authorization Schemes
Session state protection
Security Attributes
Summary
Chapter 23: Application Conversion
APEX application conversion
Planning and understanding the application
APEX Application Migrations
Creating an APEX workspace
Converting Microsoft Access applications
Converting Oracle Forms applications
What's left to do?
Summary
Chapter 24: APEX Best Practices
Don't re-invent the wheel
Learn the APEX IDE
Setting up workspaces
Application ID
Page numbering and page groups
Use Oracle naming conventions
Use bind variables
Don't hardcode, use Substitution Strings
Use PL/SQL packages
Re-useable code
Never change the provided APEX resources
Never trust the end user
Create your own restore point
Multi-user environment
Multi-lingual environment
Team development
Document development standards
Thou shall enter comments
APEX views (APEX dictionary)
APEX Application Reports
APEX Runtime-only version
Backup, backup, and more backup
Summary

What You Will Learn

  • Fully utilize the Web development aspects of APEX by getting familiar with necessary skills such as HTML, the DOM, CSS, and JavaScript
  • Understand important concepts of APEX such as Session State, Substitution Strings, the Shortcuts mechanism, and more
  • Create the APEX application building blocks, like pages, items, processes, data validation, shared components, and others, and use them to implement the User Interface and the application (business) logic
  • Generate APEX Forms and modify them to your needs using the APEX wizards
  • Build, display, and validate a Tabular Form, manually as well as using a wizard
  • Create and modify Interactive Reports
  • Understand the AJAX concepts, such as XMLHttpRequest, communication, and data format, in order to enhance users' experience, and to optimize application performance
  • Secure your applications using Authentication Schemes, Authorization Schemes, Session State Protection, and Security Attributes
  • Build localized and/or multi-lingual applications using the APEX Globalization support, including the APEX built-in translation mechanism
  • Convert Microsoft Access and Oracle Forms applications to APEX applications
  • Explore APEX SQL Workshop via its modules such as Object Browser, SQL Commands, SQL Scripts, and Query Builder, and learn how to use them to build the database infrastructure and support for your application
  • Implement AJAX in APEX with the help of detailed working examples

In Detail

Developing data-centric web applications can be a real challenge as it is a multi-disciplinary process. There are many technologies involved in the client side (HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and so on); the interaction with the database, on the server side; the typeless nature of the web environment; and above all, the need to put it all together. This needs to be done in a manner that will allow the end users to do their job in the simplest and most efficient way, while enriching their user experience. How often have you wished that developing such applications could be uncomplicated and straightforward? This book will show you that it's possible, and teaches you how to do it, using Oracle Application Express (APEX).

With this practical guide to APEX, you'll learn how to easily develop data-centric web applications for the Oracle environment. The book covers the development cycle of an APEX application, reviewing the major APEX principles and building blocks chapter by chapter. It starts with the basic skills you need to get going when developing with APEX. Later, you will learn advanced issues, such as how to build tailor-made forms and reports, using APEX APIs, AJAX, and so on. It not only deals with the "How" but also with the "Why", and before long you will be able to understand APEX concepts, and use them to expand and enhance the built-in features, wizards, and tools.

The book starts with the design phase, including building the necessary database objects infrastructure; continues with ways to implement the application logic (on the server side) and the User Interface (on the client side), whilst showing you how to enhance your applications' features and functionality according to your specific needs; and it ends with application deployment.

The book emphasizes and clearly documents areas such as Globalization, Localization, and developing multi-lingual applications, and includes a special discussion about Right-To-Left (RTL) support for APEX applications, documented here for the first time.

Throughout the book, there are many screenshots and snippets of code, taken from working APEX applications. The book is accompanied by demo APEX applications that you can download and install in your APEX environment, thoroughly analyze, and learn from as you read the book.

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