OBUG CONNECT 2013: impressions from an APEX Developer

On 26 march I attended OBUG CONNECT 2013 at Kinepolis Antwerp. With around 40 sessions to pick from, picking out sessions was not an easy decision.

One session that caught the eye was the presentation about Formspider given by Yalim Gerger. While the presentation name and description did not reveal that the presentation was about Formspider, it was not hard to guess since it was given by its creator.

Yalim explained that since 2008 the landscape in the IT world changed. In 2008 developers developed for one platform, now there are many more platforms, all which require different programming skills. Yalim suggested using Formspider, a PL/SQL framework as an alternative. Formspider uses one javascript library maintained by “one” developer. This way only one developer needs to worry about security, browser compatibility and browser performance. On top of that developers only need to learn only one programming language: PL/SQL.

It must be said, Yalim made a strong case. Unfortunately we did not get the chance to see his framework in action, but it has to be said, if even a part of what he said is true, Formspider could become a strong player on the market.

Another interesting session was given by Patrick Hendrickx from Telenet. Telenet used APEX to Design some internal project management applications. He decided to go with APEX rather than buy a product or expand existing products.

He had some good arguments to do so:

-          APEX is Browser only technology

-          APEX is RAD

-          It has good and easy graph support

-          Wizard driven, so less programming skills required

-          Lastly because they already invested in Oracle, it was easy to integrate with the technology stack from Telenet

Not only did APEX fulfill the requirements, it also was a good decision from a financial perspective.

The demo Patrick showed of the different tools was also quite sexy. It is nice to see that architects are starting to see the Advantages from APEX as a development tool.

In conclusion I would have to say that, even though I could not attend all APEX sessions, it was pretty clear that APEX was strongly represented on OBUG, it shows that it is an important player on the Oracle market.

Pictogram: APEX Developer – Plug-In Developer

Not every APEX developer should be a Plug-In developer.
The APEX developer uses the Plug-In a Plug In developer has created.

Following photo shows the pictograms we used during our presentation @ OBUG APEX SIG :

Pictogram Plug-In developer APEX developer

Pictogram Plug-In developer APEX developer

During the demo we showed our little green man while we created and elaborated the plug-in via the shared components.

When we implemented the plug in in a page, we showed the pictogram of the little red man.

As you can see the red guy brings different elements of the puzzle together: standard components (red) and a plug-in (the green piece).

First APEX SIG in Belgium (via OBUG) focused on APEX 4.0

Last Thursday (17/06) Oracle Benelux User Group, aka OBUG, organised his first APEX SIG, an initiative of Dimitri Gielis and Roel Hartman. Even though the new version of the product is not yet “in production”, the theme of the day was APEX 4.0.

iAdvise sponsors firs APEX SIG in BeNeLuxWe, at iAdvise, are one of the early promoters of Oracle Application Express in Belgium.   Since 2006, we implemented already different solutions with APEX. Therefore, we could not  be absent at this event and decided to participate and sponsor this first APEX SIG day.

Olivier Dupont and Jan Huyzentruyt gave a presentation with the title: “APEX 4.0: Feature 135, 184, 301, 315, 348 … How it was before, how it is now !”  The idea was to demonstrate some of the less spectacular new features of Apex 4.0 that (1) makes the life of the APEX developer easier and more productive and (2) allows to create more good looking, to the point web-application. Most of those features we explained by showing how it was in the “old” days, and how (easy) it is with APEX 4.0.

For everybody who could not attend the OBUG session, we published our presentation at slideshare.net:

A report of the day can also be found here.