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Über dieses Buch

Learn the many design decisions that must be made before starting to build a large Oracle Application Express (APEX) application for the cloud or enterprise.
One of APEX's key strengths is the fact that it is a Rapid Application Development (RAD) tool. This is also a major weakness when it tempts developers to start coding too soon. Small applications that consist of tens of pages can be coded without a lot of design work because they can be re-factored quickly when design flaws are discovered. Design flaws in large cloud and enterprise applications that consist of hundreds or thousands of pages are not so easy to re-factor due to the time needed to redevelop and retest the application, not to mention the risk of breaking functionality in subtle ways.
Designing a large application before coding starts is a profitable exercise because a thoughtful design goes a long way in mitigating cost overruns and schedule slippage while simultaneously enhancing quality. This book takes into account perspectives from other non-developer stakeholders such as maintenance developers, business analysts, testers, technical writers, end users, and business owners. Overlooking these perspectives is one of the chief causes of expensive rework late in the development cycle.
Oracle Application Express by Design illustrates APEX design principles by using architecture diagrams, screen shots, and explicit code snippets to guide developers through the many design choices and complex interrelationship issues that must be evaluated before embarking on large APEX projects. This book:Guides you through important, up-front APEX design decisions
Helps you to optimize your design by keeping all stakeholders in mind
Explicit code examples show how design impacts cost, schedule, and quality
What You Will LearnPick and choose from the list of designs before coding begins
Bake optimal quality into the underlying fabric of an APEX application
Think and design from outside the developer’s narrow perspective
Optimize APEX application designs to satisfy multiple stakeholder groups
Evaluate design options through hands-on, explicit code examples
Define and measure success for large cloud and enterprise APEX applications
Who This Book Is For
APEX developers and development teams

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. Design Trade-Offs

Abstract
The act of designing a large and complex artifact like a cloud or enterprise software system is a team sport. A multi-disciplined team of diverse stakeholders must examine the desired artifact from many seemingly conflicting angles and design it in a way that yields the maximum benefit to the company. This is much easier said than done.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 2. Inside vs. Outside of the Box

Abstract
APEX developers constantly refer to working inside or outside of the APEX “box”. What does this really mean? Is the choice a significant design consideration? This chapter wrestles with these two questions and gives you a high-level road map that will help guide you when you think you need to venture outside the box.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 3. Database Design for APEX

Abstract
Database design is a huge topic that is well beyond the scope of this book; however, there are some database design issues that must be considered when APEX is used as the primary GUI for managing data in an Oracle database.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 4. Many Light Pages vs. One Heavy Page

Abstract
End users want their web pages to load quickly, ideally in under a second. After their web page is loaded, end users then want their web page to be full of artifacts that make their interaction with the page easy and intuitive; and, by the way, they want their pages to have some “pizzazz”. As time goes on, end users want their web pages to instantly adapt to changes in their business environment. These goals are in conflict.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 5. Database Updates

Abstract
The data inside a database is an extremely valuable asset when it accurately models a business. Accurate data enables an enterprise to study and learn from past performance, make today’s business decisions based on reliable real-time evidence, and step into the uncertain future based on realistic forecasts. Inaccurate data, on the other hand, is a disaster because business decisions will be made on the basis of fantasy instead of fact, which often leads to business failure.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 6. Cookie Applications

Abstract
Divide and conquer. This saying, in a software context, means that one’s chances for success can increase when you take a large, complex application, and break it down into bite-sized pieces. APEX makes this strategy relatively easy by enabling individual APEX applications to communicate with one another by sharing a single browser cookie. A single login application opens the door to running multiple specialized APEX applications without the need to log in multiple times. This chapter explores this strategy in more detail.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 7. Authorization

Abstract
Like many aspects of APEX, authorization schemes have been set up to be simple, declarative artifacts. A single APEX authorization scheme is much like a building brick. The act of laying a single brick, or even several bricks to make a simple structure like a raised garden flowerbed, is simple and easy to do; the design effort is trivial. Now the same simple construction element, the brick, can also be used as the fundamental building block for extremely large and complex structures like the Dome of Florence Cathedral in Italy, which is the largest brick dome in the world. Designing the cathedral was most definitely not a trivial effort. Like the cathedral, a large APEX cloud or enterprise computer system will need a major design effort before beginning to construct the system’s complex interplay of permissions that relate people, roles, and responsibilities. Now let’s discuss some of the design issues that are related to APEX authorization schemes.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 8. GUI Design

Abstract
Designing a web-based Graphic User Interface (GUI) that pleases absolutely everyone is impossible. That is the bad news. The good news is you can probably please a majority of your users by using APEX, which delivers a good looking and functional GUI at a reasonable cost.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 9. Error Handling

Abstract
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This old saying should be your mantra when handling errors. By far, the best way to handle an error is to prevent it from occurring in the first place.
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 10. Mobile

Abstract
But what does “mobile first” really mean and how does it affect the design process in a cloud and enterprise APEX environment? How do we approach the concept of optimal design in a world that is a mix of desktop and mobile devices?
Patrick Cimolini

Chapter 11. Rules and Guidelines

Abstract
So your team is well on its way to coming together.
Patrick Cimolini

Appendix A. A Cloudy Crystal Ball

Abstract
How long will Oracle Application Express (APEX) be around? It is now pushing 15 years old, which makes it “long in the tooth”. Here is my two cents on the future of APEX.
Patrick Cimolini

Appendix B. Things Not Covered

Abstract
This book’s intent was to fill an APEX niche that has not, to my knowledge, been filled. There are areas that are not covered in this book. You might think that, to be complete, this book should address them; however, many of these areas are already well documented in the literature and I am loath to duplicate the existing work. The APEX home page on the Oracle Technology Network (OTN) site contains an up-to-date list of APEX books plus links to many helpful blogs. The following areas are well documented on the Community page on the APEX site.
Patrick Cimolini

Backmatter

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