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Showing posts from November, 2009

Updateable Interactive Report - Websheets style

For a current project the customer needed an Interactive Report with update functionality - in an Excel like style. Since we couldn't wait for APEX 4.0, we decided to build it in the current version.
The requirement is that the user can change some fields in the report (the Expenses, budget and estimates) for every year of the project life cycle and then the funding should be calculated according a defined formula (to financially smooth things out).
So I created a nice view with a formula to show the budget en estimate and the calculate the funding and created an Interactive Report on top of it.
The editable fields are created using the apex_item.text function with the p_attributes parameter set to:
'onclick=editField(<type>,<key1>,<key2>) readonly class="editField"'.
Once the user clicks on the field, the field is presented in a different style, made editable and with two little icons next to it.
After making the change, the user hits the green tic…

Collecting ideas for APEX 4.0 Plug-Ins...using Google Wave

As you all know by now APEX 4.0 will have some new functionality regarding the creation of Custom Item Types and Custom Region Types. These types will be called "Plug-Ins". The idea is that there will be a public App Store like library where you can up- and download plug-ins.

A snippet from the Oracle Open World APEX 4.0 presentation:
Easy way to enhance the existing built-in functionality of Oracle APEX with new item types, region types, dynamic actions, etc.Developers use in similar fashion to native widgetsWizard support and declarative setting of attributesIncluded in APEX application exportBy providing this plug-in system in APEX, we want to engage the APEX community to create a rich ecosystem around Oracle APEX.The APEX Development Team can’t possibly incorporate all the widgets that developers would like to utilize. By using plug-ins developers can readily incorporate additional item / region types to enhance the functionality, appearance and user friendliness of their …

Oracle Application Express Forms Converter Book - Review

As I promised earlier I should write a review of the Oracle Application Express Forms Converter book by Douwe Pieter van den Bos. I finally found the time to work it doesn't take that much time, because it is "just" 150 pages thick (or thin).
The book contains 8 chapters, in which the reader is guided through an Forms2APEX conversion project from start to finish. It starts of with "Understanding your Project" (1), wherein understanding the reasons for conversion as well as the functionality of the Forms application is stressed as important, because these will influence the way you'll solve things in the APEX application. One or more examples should have been useful here.
The next chapter, "Preparing your Forms Conversion" (2), covers the creation of XML files from the source files. BTW, not only Forms, also "Reports" are - briefly - touched (and can be converted as well). Also different ways of creating a target database are m…

A Google Wave in an APEX Page

That is soooo simple, click here

My first blogpost using Google Wave

It is somewhat experimental, but here it is...and you probably can't see it if you don't have a Wave account.

There should be a "Bloggy" robot to facilitate postings from within Wave with just one click, but that doesn't seem to work. Instead I used Embeddy ( to give me some javascript with the Wave ID. I copied that and pasted it in the HTML of the Blogger Template. The DIV is just added to thi post.
You can only have either one blogpost with a Wave or need a line of javascript for each Wave you need to publish. So a working version of Bloggy might be handy...

Handling information overload: Showing data on demand in an IR

Using APEX Interactive Reports you can let the user decide which columns to show or hide in a report. But even then, reports with over 20 columns are still being used. So I tried to come up with a solution where you can hide less important (detail) column information and still reveal that information with minimal effort - like a mouse-over event. In this tiny example the list of employees of a department pops up when the user moves his mouse over the little question mark icon.
By adding some HTML and Javascript in the select statement (I know, that is not a "best practice"...but if you've got a better idea, please drop a comment) and some CSS you can use this technique - even for more complex "detail" reports!
The select statement used in this example is:select dept.deptno
, dname
, loc
, 'onmouseover="javascript:$(''.overlay'').hide();$x_Toggle('''||dept.DEPTNO||''')">'||