Search icon
Subscription
0
Cart icon
Close icon
You have no products in your basket yet
Save more on your purchases!
Savings automatically calculated. No voucher code required
Arrow left icon
All Products
Best Sellers
New Releases
Books
Videos
Audiobooks
Learning Hub
Newsletters
Free Learning
Arrow right icon
$9.99 | ALL EBOOKS & VIDEOS
Over 7,000 tech titles at $9.99 each with AI-powered learning assistants on new releases
Effortless App Development with Oracle Visual Builder
Effortless App Development with Oracle Visual Builder

Effortless App Development with Oracle Visual Builder: Boost productivity by building web and mobile applications efficiently using the drag-and-drop approach

By Ankur Jain
$35.99 $9.99
Book Mar 2021 500 pages 1st Edition
eBook
$35.99 $9.99
Print
$48.99
Subscription
$15.99 Monthly
eBook
$35.99 $9.99
Print
$48.99
Subscription
$15.99 Monthly

What do you get with eBook?

Product feature icon Instant access to your Digital eBook purchase
Product feature icon Download this book in EPUB and PDF formats
Product feature icon Access this title in our online reader with advanced features
Product feature icon DRM FREE - Read whenever, wherever and however you want
Buy Now

Product Details


Publication date : Mar 26, 2021
Length 500 pages
Edition : 1st Edition
Language : English
ISBN-13 : 9781800569805
Vendor :
Oracle
Category :
Table of content icon View table of contents Preview book icon Preview Book

Effortless App Development with Oracle Visual Builder

Chapter 1: What, Why, and How (WWH) of Visual Builder

The first chapter of every book is one of the most important chapters as it mainly focuses on the introduction of the technology covered in the book. So, the first chapter of this book will help you to know more about Visual Builder (VB), why you need to use it, and how to use it.

At a high level, the VB is the cloud offering by Oracle that helps you to build engaging web and mobile applications by dragging and dropping the UI components. VB is a declarative approach for building cross-platform applications.

In this chapter, we will cover the following topics:

  • Introducing VB
  • Reviewing the features and benefits of VB
  • Knowing the tools required to use VB
  • Knowing the technologies used in VB
  • Understanding the VB architecture

After completing this chapter, you will be familiar with Visual Builder, its features, and the benefits of using VB. In this chapter, we have explained what tools are required to start the VB, and what technologies you should know or you should learn. Along with this, we have drawn out the VB architecture, which explains how different VB components work together in order to develop web or mobile applications.

Technical requirements

You don't require any software or hardware to follow this chapter.

Introducing VB

VB is an Oracle Cloud Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering that enables us to build web and mobile applications declaratively by dragging and dropping a wide variety of built-in User Interface (UI) components. VB helps you to build enterprise-grade applications that can be developed and deployed quickly and can be accessed from anywhere at any time. You don't need to install any additional software on the local machine to use VB. The complete development life cycle is managed by the browser interface. From development to testing to deployment, everything is managed by a single unified tool called Visual Builder.

VB allows developers to access the source code of visual development, which makes it easy to write custom code (HTML, JavaScript, JSON) to enhance the functionality of applications. You don't require any programming experience to develop applications using Visual Builder. The VB uses the open source Oracle technology called Oracle JavaScript Extension Toolkit (JET) for visual development. All the visual UI components belong to the JET family; however, you have the option to use HTML tags and/or the code editor when required.

VB provides a way to store and manage data into the embedded database and a mechanism to call any type of external REST API to interact with a wide variety of external applications. VB provides a declarative way to call any REST API without any coding. VB allows us to call REST-based integrations developed in the integration cloud seamlessly. A VB application interacts with an embedded database or external REST APIs to interact with data.

Having understood what VB really is, next we will have a look at its features and advantages.

Reviewing the features and benefits of VB

It is worthwhile knowing the benefits VB offers. In this fast-growing world, organizations are looking for a development tool that can help to deliver responsive web and mobile applications quickly and efficiently. VB allows quick development, requires no additional software cost, is a drag and drop tool, has a user-friendly interface to develop UIs, and more. It's a browser-based tool that helps to deliver engaging web and mobile applications.

VB is best suited for situations when you need to extend Oracle and non-Oracle SaaS applications quickly. Using the inbuilt catalog of the Oracle SaaS application, you can extend the Oracle SaaS application very easily.

Let's try to understand with an example. Let's say there is a set of external users who want to access the Oracle SaaS procurement module in order to create Purchase Orders (POs), approve POs, list POs, and so on, but the organization is not willing to accord access to the Oracle SaaS application to the external users.

If the organization has VB, then as a solution, the organization can plan to build a web or mobile application in VB and create different flows and pages. Developers can use the built-in catalog of Oracle SaaS to communicate with the Oracle SaaS application in VB and create/approve/list POs and so on in real time from the VB application directly instead of logging into the Oracle SaaS application.

Once the VB application is developed, you can deploy it with a single click and provide access to the external users so that external users can use SaaS application functionality using the VB application as required.

The features that VB offers are as follows:

  • Embedded database: Oracle VB comes with an embedded database that helps you to manage transactional data. Using the data manager of the embedded database, you can import and export bulk data quickly from .csv or .xlsx files. This database has a set of features that makes it easy to maintain the data in the database.

    Important Note:

    An embedded database has a limit of 5 GB storage space.

  • Connect to different database: Oracle VB is provisioned with a local database automatically, but VB gives you the option to switch the local database to another Oracle database such as Database as a Service (DBaaS) or Autonomous Transaction Processing (ATP). Once you connect to a different database, all the data can be managed by the corresponding database.
  • Connect to external REST APIs: Oracle VB allows you to communicate with external REST APIs using a declarative approach without a single line of code. You can connect to any type of REST API and interact with external applications in real time.
  • Integration with Oracle SaaS application: VB allows out-of-the-box connectivity with Oracle SaaS that helps to extend Oracle SaaS application functionality. With the help of an built-in catalog, VB streamlines the process of communicating with Oracle SaaS applications in real time without any extra effort.
  • Connect to Processes: VB allows you to interact with the Processes Cloud Service (PCS), which helps you to fetch lists of tasks and take necessary action (approve or reject) from the VB application directly.
  • Web application development: VB allows you to deploy responsive web applications that run on the VB server engine without the need for any additional servers. However, VB web applications can be deployed on any external server but the VB features will be limited.

    The following screenshot shows one of the pages of a VB web application:

Figure 1.1 – Web application

Figure 1.1 – Web application

  • Mobile application development: VB also allows you to develop a mobile application and build it for Android and iOS. You can build Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) from mobile applications too with just a single click.

    The following screenshot shows one of the pages of a mobile application:

Figure 1.2 – Mobile application

Figure 1.2 – Mobile application

  • Custom code: In addition to dragging and dropping out-of-the-box components, you have the choice to extend your VB app's functionality using HTML5 and JavaScript.
  • Inbuilt security framework: Security is one of the top priorities of web and mobile applications, especially when the application is exposed over the internet. VB comes with an embedded security framework that allows you to secure data as well as applications. Application security alone is not enough as anyone can spoof requests in between, change roles, and steal data. So, along with application security, data security is also required.

With the previously listed features, VB is one of the strongest cloud platforms and allows you to build cross-platform applications and solve all the organization's problems.

The benefits of VB are as follows:

  • Unified platform: The complete life cycle of application development is managed by a single unified platform. Every stage of the application is managed by a single browser-based tool.
  • Quick development: Web and mobile applications can be developed and deployed in a single day using VB as the entire development is just drag and drop. VB provides a user-friendly wizard and other browser-based tools that allow fast development.
  • No additional software: To develop and deploy web and mobile applications, you don't require any additional software to be installed on your local machine. You just require a browser, good internet connectivity, and a VB subscription, and then you can start your application development.
  • No additional cost: Apart from VB's cost, you don't need to pay anything to build web and mobile applications.
  • Easy access to cloud app data and OIC integrations via the catalog: VB provides an built-in catalog to provide access to Oracle SaaS data and integrations developed in Oracle Integration Cloud.
  • Single-click deployment: Using the unified platform, you can bring the application to the world with just a single click.
  • Rich set of UI components: There is a big list of UI components that allow you to create interactive web and mobile applications.
  • Easy creation/packaging of mobile apps

Having discussed the features and benefits of VB, next we'll explain what tools are required to start development on VB.

Knowing the tools required to use VB

Oracle VB is a pure browser-based development tool that makes it easy for developers to manage the complete life cycle of the development process. To start development in VB, you should be equipped with the following tools:

  • Oracle VB subscription: First and foremost, you must have a VB subscription. A VB instance can be created separately from Oracle Cloud, but VB is also a part of Oracle Integration Cloud (OIC). If you already have an OIC instance, you can leverage the VB feature of OIC without creating a separate VB instance.
  • Browser: Since VB development and deployment is purely browser based, you only need to install a browser to start development. Having a browser-based tool simplifies the development process. You can view the list of supported browsers in the Oracle official documentation at https://docs.oracle.com/en/cloud/paas/app-builder-cloud/abcrn/supported-browsers.html.
  • Good quality internet: Since VB is a cloud-based tool, you should have good quality internet to speed up your application development process.

Having discussed the tools required to develop with VB, next we'll explain what technologies you should know about before you start developing.

Knowing the technologies used in VB

You don't require any programming skills to work with on VB as it provides a drag and drop feature with which you can build an enterprise-grade application. But it's really worth knowing what technologies are used in VB development:

  • JET: JET stands for Java Extension Toolkit, which is Oracle open source technology that is used to build interactive UIs. VB uses JET to design UIs using a rich set of UI components for web and mobile applications. To find out more about JET, you can visit http://oraclejet.org. You can also refer to the JET cookbook for working with UI components at https://www.oracle.com/webfolder/technetwork/jet/jetCookbook.html.

    The following screenshot shows various JET components in the VB component palette:

Figure 1.3 – JET components

Figure 1.3 – JET components

  • HTML5: HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language, which is used to build responsive web user interfaces. In combination with JET, VB allows us to use HTML5 to extend your UI's functionality in order to make interactive web and mobile applications. To learn more about HTML5, refer to https://www.w3schools.com/html/.
  • JavaScript: JavaScript is a web scripting language that's used to develop and control dynamic content. It is also used for client-side validation of web pages. In VB, JavaScript can be used extensively to extend web page functionalities such as client-side validation, filtering records at the client side, and so on. To learn more about JavaScript, refer to https://www.javascript.com/.
  • CSS: CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets, and is used in web applications to make UIs interactive. With the help of CSS, you can completely change the design of web applications. VB also allows you to write custom CSS to make your web and mobile application interactive. To learn more about CSS, refer to https://www.javatpoint.com/css-tutorial.

Having understood what technologies you should know for VB, next we'll explain the VB architecture.

Understanding the VB architecture

It's important to understand how different VB components are placed and communicate with each other in order to develop web or mobile applications. You also need to understand that VB is not just a development platform, but it also allows you to host the applications, so you don't require a separate hosting environment to run applications developed in VB.

The following screenshot shows how different components communicate with each other:

Figure 1.4 – VB architecture

Figure 1.4 – VB architecture

VB uses industry standards such as Oracle JET, HTML5, CSS, and REST. VB uses REST technology for data communication when the UI needs to push/pull data from an embedded database or external applications.

Let's take a look at the different VB components:

  • Oracle JavaScript Extension Toolkit (JET): JET is the open source technology used to develop web and mobile interfaces in VB. A rich set of components is available in the VB component list that help us to develop a user-friendly UI.
  • HTTP/REST: The communication between the frontend and backend happens via HTTPS or REST calls.
  • Frondend: VB mainly uses Oracle JET to develop the UI using drag and drop features. However, in order to extend the VB application, you have the option to use HTML and JavaScript. Mobile applications that you build in VB use Apache Cordova to access device features such as the camera or location.
  • Backend: The backend of VB web or mobile applications is the embedded or external database (Oracle SaaS, non-Oracle SaaS, third-party integrations, Processes, and so on). All the communication between the frontend and backend happens using REST APIs. This is the only mechanism available to communicate with the data in VB. However, you also have the option to use SOAP APIs, but this is not straightforward and you have to use JavaScript to communicate with SOAP APIs. Whenever you create objects (Business Objects) in an embedded database, VB exposes the REST APIs for those objects and interactions happen using only those APIs.

Instead of using an embedded database, you can switch to use other Oracle database services, such as DBaaS or ATP. After you switch database, all the database objects (Business Objects) that you create in the database will be created in the destination database. In this case, the communication will also happen via REST APIs.

In order to communicate with external applications, you have to build a connection (Service Connection) in VB and consume the REST interfaces of those applications. The VB Service Connection can also be used to interact with Oracle SaaS, Processes, and OIC seamlessly.

Now you know how the different components fit in VB, which will make it easier for you to develop applications in VB.

Summary

In this chapter, we took a look at a lot of topics that will help you start your journey with VB. With this chapter, you learned about Visual Builder, how it works, and its features and benefits. This will help you adopt VB quickly and easily.

We also covered various tools that are required to start development on VB. This will prepare you for the next chapters. You have also learned what technologies will be used in VB, and we have provided a few references that help you to learn all of them easily. Although you are not required to know them all in detail, having an understanding of all those technologies will help to adopt VB quickly.

You have seen how different VB components communicate with each other with a good architecture image. We have explained all the components in detail to aid your understanding.

In the next chapter, you will learn how to provision a VB instance, create users, and assign roles to the application. We will also explain the various ways to navigate around VB.

Questions

  1. If someone doesn't know JET, can they use VB?
  2. Can the 5 GB of space in the embedded database be increased on request?
Left arrow icon Right arrow icon
Download code icon Download Code

Key benefits

  • Execute various real-time use cases and develop web and mobile applications quickly
  • Enhance your skills by extending Oracle and non-Oracle SaaS applications using VB
  • Gain the knowledge needed to take on projects directly and work independently

Description

Organizations are moving their applications, data, and processes to the cloud to reduce application costs, effort, and maintenance. However, adopting new technology poses challenges for developers, solutions architects, and designers due to a lack of knowledge and appropriate practical training resources. This book helps you get to grips with Oracle Visual Builder (VB) and enables you to quickly develop web and mobile applications and deploy them to production without hassle. This book will provide you with a solid understanding of VB so that you can adopt it at a faster pace and start building applications right away. After working with real-time examples to learn about VB, you'll discover how to design, develop, and deploy web and mobile applications quickly. You'll cover all the VB components in-depth, including web and mobile application development, business objects, and service connections. In order to use all these components, you'll also explore best practices, security, and recommendations, which are well explained within the chapters. Finally, this book will help you gain the knowledge you need to enhance the performance of an application before deploying it to production. By the end of this book, you will be able to work independently and deploy your VB applications efficiently and with confidence.

What you will learn

Get started with VB and explore its architecture and basic building blocks Gain a clear understanding of business objects and learn how to manage them Create service connections to connect to the external API and Oracle SaaS Build web and mobile apps and run them on various devices Develop Oracle Cloud and non-Oracle SaaS app extensions Get to grips with data and application security using practical examples Explore best practices along with troubleshooting and debugging mechanisms Connect your VB application with VBS for application versioning using Git

What do you get with eBook?

Product feature icon Instant access to your Digital eBook purchase
Product feature icon Download this book in EPUB and PDF formats
Product feature icon Access this title in our online reader with advanced features
Product feature icon DRM FREE - Read whenever, wherever and however you want
Buy Now

Product Details


Publication date : Mar 26, 2021
Length 500 pages
Edition : 1st Edition
Language : English
ISBN-13 : 9781800569805
Vendor :
Oracle
Category :

Table of Contents

23 Chapters
Preface Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
1. Section 1: Exploring the Building Blocks of VB Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
2. Chapter 1: What, Why, and How (WWH) of Visual Builder Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
3. Chapter 2: Provisioning and Understanding the Visual Builder Instance Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
4. Chapter 3: Exploring Visual Builder Ingredients Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
5. Section 2: Working with Data and Services Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
6. Chapter 4: Creating and Managing Business Objects Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
7. Chapter 5: Creating and Managing Service Connections Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
8. Chapter 6: Building Web Applications Using Real-World Examples Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
9. Chapter 7: Working with Life Cycle Events, Validations, and UI Logic Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
10. Section 3: Building Web and Mobile Apps Using Various VB Components Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
11. Chapter 8: Exploring Other Visual Components and Their Advanced Functionalities Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
12. Chapter 9: Extending Oracle and Non-Oracle SaaS Applications Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
13. Chapter 10: Working with Business Processes Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
14. Chapter 11: Building a Mobile Application with Live Examples Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
15. Section 4: Security, Recommendations, Best Practices, and Troubleshooting Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
16. Chapter 12: Securing VB Applications Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
17. Chapter 13: Understanding and Managing Various Stages of a VB App Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
18. Chapter 14: Best Practices and Recommendations for VB Applications Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
19. Chapter 15: Troubleshooting and Debugging VB Applications Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
20. Chapter 16: Managing VB Apps Using Visual Builder Studio Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
21. Assessments Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
22. Other Books You May Enjoy Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

Customer reviews

Filter icon Filter
Top Reviews
Rating distribution
Empty star icon Empty star icon Empty star icon Empty star icon Empty star icon 0
(0 Ratings)
5 star 0%
4 star 0%
3 star 0%
2 star 0%
1 star 0%

Filter reviews by


No reviews found
Get free access to Packt library with over 7500+ books and video courses for 7 days!
Start Free Trial

FAQs

How do I buy and download an eBook? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

Where there is an eBook version of a title available, you can buy it from the book details for that title. Add either the standalone eBook or the eBook and print book bundle to your shopping cart. Your eBook will show in your cart as a product on its own. After completing checkout and payment in the normal way, you will receive your receipt on the screen containing a link to a personalised PDF download file. This link will remain active for 30 days. You can download backup copies of the file by logging in to your account at any time.

If you already have Adobe reader installed, then clicking on the link will download and open the PDF file directly. If you don't, then save the PDF file on your machine and download the Reader to view it.

Please Note: Packt eBooks are non-returnable and non-refundable.

Packt eBook and Licensing When you buy an eBook from Packt Publishing, completing your purchase means you accept the terms of our licence agreement. Please read the full text of the agreement. In it we have tried to balance the need for the ebook to be usable for you the reader with our needs to protect the rights of us as Publishers and of our authors. In summary, the agreement says:

  • You may make copies of your eBook for your own use onto any machine
  • You may not pass copies of the eBook on to anyone else
How can I make a purchase on your website? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

If you want to purchase a video course, eBook or Bundle (Print+eBook) please follow below steps:

  1. Register on our website using your email address and the password.
  2. Search for the title by name or ISBN using the search option.
  3. Select the title you want to purchase.
  4. Choose the format you wish to purchase the title in; if you order the Print Book, you get a free eBook copy of the same title. 
  5. Proceed with the checkout process (payment to be made using Credit Card, Debit Cart, or PayPal)
Where can I access support around an eBook? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
  • If you experience a problem with using or installing Adobe Reader, the contact Adobe directly.
  • To view the errata for the book, see www.packtpub.com/support and view the pages for the title you have.
  • To view your account details or to download a new copy of the book go to www.packtpub.com/account
  • To contact us directly if a problem is not resolved, use www.packtpub.com/contact-us
What eBook formats do Packt support? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

Our eBooks are currently available in a variety of formats such as PDF and ePubs. In the future, this may well change with trends and development in technology, but please note that our PDFs are not Adobe eBook Reader format, which has greater restrictions on security.

You will need to use Adobe Reader v9 or later in order to read Packt's PDF eBooks.

What are the benefits of eBooks? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon
  • You can get the information you need immediately
  • You can easily take them with you on a laptop
  • You can download them an unlimited number of times
  • You can print them out
  • They are copy-paste enabled
  • They are searchable
  • There is no password protection
  • They are lower price than print
  • They save resources and space
What is an eBook? Chevron down icon Chevron up icon

Packt eBooks are a complete electronic version of the print edition, available in PDF and ePub formats. Every piece of content down to the page numbering is the same. Because we save the costs of printing and shipping the book to you, we are able to offer eBooks at a lower cost than print editions.

When you have purchased an eBook, simply login to your account and click on the link in Your Download Area. We recommend you saving the file to your hard drive before opening it.

For optimal viewing of our eBooks, we recommend you download and install the free Adobe Reader version 9.