Join the ODTUG Leadership Circle (Alternative tittle: Mia need friends her own age)

I am privileged to be attending the yearly IOUC conference which essentially brings together all the Oracle usergroup leaders from all over the world. It was amazing to see so many talented and respected individuals who have dedicated so many years to educating new users and bringing new content. They sat all together teaching and learning from each other.

However, while looking around one thing that struck me was that no one there seemed to be under the age of 45. It was hard not to ask myself, where are all of the young faces? While all of these individuals bring their years of experience with them, it cannot be denied that new blood young is in short supply and needed to move forward. Many sessions focused on how to get students, kids and undergrads into the Oracle development world but my question is where are all the 30 – 45 year olds :)

This is where ODTUG comes in. The ODTUG group has created an amazing new Leadership Circle program where older Oracle veterans can guide and mentor new leaders. Through the program younger people can throw their hat into the ring and become the next generation of Oracle leaders. New ideas and new energy are needed to continue innovation in the Oracle world and the user communities. It is essential that the people who live in the new social media world begin contributing their ideas, passions and “friend circles” otherwise we end up in a situation of stagnation. With all of this in mind I encourage anyone who is passionate about Oracle to apply to the ODTUG leadership program and help us shape the next generation of the user group leadership. I will end with the wise words of Tim Gorman my fellow board member who said today at the IOUC conference “Every leader should prepare their successor.”

So apply here TODAY

Oracle Forms 11g New Features – ODTUG Webinar Dec. 12, 2013

Although Oracle Forms is a “mature” technology it’s still getting additional new features with every new version. Since most developers have not done any Oracle forms training since the early 90s I thought I’d do a webinar with ODTUG to get everyone caught up on the new features available now in Forms 11g R2.  Our FREE webinar will take place on Dec. 12, 2013 at 12:00pm EST but  it requires registration so sign up NOW! In the session I will cover new features from Forms 10g – 11gR2 (since I assume no one really implemented these new features). I have also invited Michael Ferrante, the Oracle Forms product manager, as a special guest who will join me in the webinar and share a sneak peak of highlights that we can expect in Forms 12c!

If you want to get a headstart on the webinar you can checkout more information about the new features available in Forms 11g:
(i) Using JavaScript  from Oracle Forms and to control Forms
(ii) Using AQ and Events to trigger Forms events
(iii) Running WebServices from Forms by using the Java import functionality of Forms

In the webinar I am going to summarize each of these features, but I strongly encourage you to complete the tutorials below about each feature as well if you want to know where to get started (click on the titles to visit each page).

 JavaScript Support Tutorial

Prerequisites:

  • Access to Oracle Forms 11.1.1
  • Access to an Oracle database with the SCOTT schema (EMP and DEPT) installed
  • Use of Internet Explorer 7 or later

This new feature allows you to set up and run an application that demonstrates Oracle Forms and JavaScript integration.  The demo application integrates simple Forms and a dHTML menu system that can control the Form and other dHTML objects that are in the same browser window (such as date picker and an image viewer).  This application allows you to demonstrate how Oracle Forms calls these browser widgets.

Approximate run time: 30 minutes  

Advanced Queues Support Tutorial

Prerequisites:

  • Access to Oracle Forms 11.1.1
  • Access to Oracle database that supports Advanced Queuing and XML
  • Access to a SYS user account

The new AQ support feature enables you to build a simple Oracle Forms 11g application with an event object and then integrate it with a database queue you create beforehand.  In this tutorial we create a simple chat application that demonstrates the new asynchronous events feature.  You build a simple Form that retrieves the payload from the queue then uses AQ to send and receive messages.

Approximate run time: 2 hours

WebService Support Tutorial

Prerequisites:

  • Oracle Forms 11.1.1.2.0  
  • JDeveloper 11.1.1.2.0

This tutorial shows how to call a Webservice from Oracle Forms 11g.  By using JDeveloper you will build the interface to the Webservice (Java client) with minimal amount of coding.  This simple demonstration will show how to create a stub for calling an external Webservice and then how to call that stub from Oracle Forms.

Approximate run time: 30 minutes

Any questions? If not join our webinar and  sign up NOW!

Good luck and feel free to post any questions!

UKOUG Tech13 Slides in Case You Missed My Sessions

ukoug_logoToday was an incredible content filled day at the UKOUG Tech13 conference where I attended and conducted some great sessions.  My sessions were very well received and had several surprises.

1) In my Oracle Forms to ADF Mobile session we had a full house. All chairs were occupied! Granted they did give us a small room but still :)
IMG_1115[1]
2) In my Oracle Forms modernization session I had over 50 participants.  All were very happy to hear that Forms is not dead and even happier to see how many other participants were in the session and in the same boat as them.

3) Out of all the customers attending both sessions only 2 of them were running client server versions of Forms! Of course one of them was still running some form 3.0 systems but still … an impressive statistic. It gives me hope that we are on our way to modernization.

4) In both sessions the crowd sat in total silence staring intently at the slides. I couldn’t tell if:

a) They were enthralled and trying to absorb every word.
b) I had lost them completely and got too technical.
c) They had fallen asleep with their eyes open.
d) They were British and I’m not used to quiet crowds. I’m used to louder Israeli and American audiences :)

I want to thank all of you who joined my sessions and for showing your support.

A copy of the session slides can be downloaded here:

Session: Take Your Oracle Forms on the Road Using ADF Mobile  - Download the Slides 

Session:  Strategies to Move Forward with Oracle Forms: What Now? What’s Next?  –  Download the Slides

The demo can be viewed here:

If you have any specific questions or Oracle Forms challenges that you want to discuss feel free to contact us at info @ auraplayer.com

And if your interested in learning more you can register for our New Features in Oracle Forms 11g and 12c – ODTUG webinar on December 12, 2013 Register HERE

Oracle Forms at UKOUG Tech13 – Modernization in Manchester

Well my bags are packed and I’m ready to go ….
I am actually busy packing for my trip to Jolly old England, Manchester to be exact, for the UKOUG Tech13 conference.

The agenda could not be any better for a Forms to Java/ADF evangelist like myself. I have put down below my top picks for the conference sessions if you are a Forms lover like myself. I hope to see you all there.

And as always if anyone wants to meet up for a coffee or beer (am versus pm) you can comment below!

For those of you not going to UKOUG Tech13 you can catch my modernization session online by registering HERE

 

General sessions and keynotes

Keynote
Fusion Middleware Strategy and Future Direction
Mr Regis Louis 02/12/2013 11:30 – 12:30  Track SOA 1
Roundtable
Development Tools
Mr Andrew Clarke 03/12/2013 16:15 – 17:15 Track Roundtables 2
Oracle Fusion & Cloud Applications: A Platform for Building New User Experiences Mr Noel Portugal 03/12/2013 17:45 – 18:30 Track Engineered Systems 2

Oracle Forms Modernization

Take Your Oracle Forms on the Road Using ADF Mobile Ms Mia Urman 02/12/2013 12:40 – 13:25 Track Development 1
From Character Based Forms to Oracle SOA and BPM Suite: The Journey of the Dutch Court Systems Mr Roland Verdonk 02/12/2013 15:25 – 16:10 Track SOA 1
Strategies to Move Forward with Oracle Forms: What Now? What’s Next? Ms Mia Urman 02/12/2013 15:35 – 16:35 Track APEX 1

Life After or Integration with Forms

Forms Developer? Learn ADF Here!

Mr Sten Vesterli

02/12/2013 14:25 – 15:25 Track Development 1

How to Learn Oracle ADF

Mr Grant Ronald

02/12/2013 09:00 – 09:45 Track Development 1

Learning Oracle ADF: How to Write Code

Mr Grant Ronald

02/12/2013 16:50 – 17:35 Track Development 1

BPMN, BPEL or Maybe Java – What Should I Use to Implement my Project?

Mr Guido Schmutz

03/12/2013 14:45 – 15:45 Track SOA 2

Thick-DB for Forms, ADF, APEX and .NET Migrations

Mrs Madi Serban

03/12/2013 17:30 – 18:30 Track ADF Java 1

Building Applications for Android and iOS the Fusion Way

Mr Grant Ronald

02/12/2013 11:30 – 12:30 Track Development 1

 

The Results Are In – And so am I – ODTUG Board of Directors

boardI’m happy to report I was elected to the ODTUG board this week; I’m honored and excited to be joining such an amazing group of people to lead the Oracle Developer community through the technology world jungle.

I first became involved in ODTUG in 2011 when I started a campaign to get Oracle Forms sessions included in the KSCOPE agenda.  I continued my involvement this year at KSCOPE 2013 when I served on the ADF Content Committee under the great John King.  I wanted to join the ODTUG board to give a voice to two under-represented groups  (i) Women in the high-tech and (ii) Oracle Developers using traditional tools (Oracle Forms/Reports). I hope to do them proud. Being a member of the board is also a great opportunity to expand my reach in assisting Oracle Forms users to adopting next generation technologies such as ADF, Jdeveloper, Mobile and Cloud.

To learn more about the ODTUG board and its other members  you can also check out this blog post about the recent elections by current board member, Cameron Lackpour.

Thanks to all of those who voted for me!

What Are My Options when Going Mobile with ADF?

Earlier this month Oracle A-team member, Steven Davelaar released an in-depth article about the options that exist for going mobile with ADF.  As this is one of my favorite topics I wanted to pass along the knowledge.  I am going to give a quick summary of what the article covers, but I strongly encourage you to read the whole piece. 

Read the full article.

This article is just the first in a series to come.  The collection will be examining A-team’s experiences with adapting existing Oracle ADF applications to Mobile for a series of customers.  Together, all the articles will summarize everything Oracle A-team learned about going Mobile.  This first article is about the technology choices that have to be made when going Mobile and what those choices mean in the long term.

The Differences Between Mobile and Desktop

This section focuses on the differences between desktop interfaces and mobile interfaces.  While it seems like it should be a simple transition between the two, it’s not quite that easy; the big takeaways are: (i) The nature of tasks on mobile is very different from the nature of task performance on desktop and (ii) The user interfaces on mobile and on desktop are very different due to obvious size constraints so they can’t be expected to look and work in  the same manner  (iii) Another difference is of course the nature of how we work on the interfaces; on the mobile we use our fingers for gestures while on the desktop we use key controls and the mouse. This difference in the users interaction with the screen will also affect our interface design.  In short, going mobile means preparing for some changes.

Considerations before embarking on a mobile project?

When going mobile there are many technologies an Oracle developer can consider to develop a mobile UI (They of course only discuss Oracle technologies) : ADF Mobile, ADF Mobile Browser, and ADF Faces Rich Client.  Whereas if one was looking at the broad market they may also look at PhoneGap, HTML5 etc.  In some cases multiple technologies can be mixed to meet specific needs.  In addition to a choice between development technologies, you must also consider other design factors such as:

  • Offline Usage – Do you need offline support and sync with online systems?
  • Integration of Device Features – Do you need calendar, camera, email, maps integration?
  • Mobile User Interface – What elements are needed to make the user experience intuitive and user friendly?
  • Mobile Browser Support – Are the elements used supported by many mobile browsers ? How flexible is our UI to version changes?
  • Reuse of Business Logic – Can we not re-invent the wheel and reuse existing system business logic with a new UI? For more information on how we can re-use Oracle Forms business logic in mobile applications you can see our past blog post.

Next Steps – Moving forward

In the article, Oracle gives their opinion on the best approach to going mobile with ADF and explains how each technology offers different benefits and consequences. We suggest anyone embarking on their road to mobile check out this post to start your journey!

We are also here to help if anyone has any design questions or concerns comment below.

Good luck and Go Mobile!

Tip of the Week: “ app install failed ” error when I deploy my ipa on an iOS device

In this post, I wanted to give you a quick guide / cheat sheet for deploying your .ipa file. I will tell everyone how to prepare your iOS device for a .ipa installation (for the first time) during the development and test stages, and how to deploy a .ipa file to a new device for testing. That way we can avoid the nasty error  ” app install failed “

The hard part should be behind you if you’ve already developed an application for your iOS device, and deployed it in to a .ipa file.  All that remains is to install the .ipa file onto your iOS device.

IMPORTANT: You must have a Mac computer in order to go through this process.

A more in depth blog post can be seen here: http://www.intertech.com/Blog/xcode-4-deploying-your-app-to-your-own-iphone-ipad-ipod-touch/

 

The first step is to allow your iOS device to install the .ipa; this step should be performed only once per device.

The following steps should be performed only once per device:

1. Open Xcode on your Mac machine

2. Make sure that you have connected the device (that you wish to deploy) to your Mac

1

3. Select your device name from the left panel

4. Press on the button  “Use For Development”

5. Right-click on the device on the left panel, and select “Add device to provisioning portal” – (if you do not do this last step, you will get an “app install failed” error message on your deploying device).

Once you have completed the above steps, your device is ready to be installed with the .ipa programs from iTunes on any operating system.

Installing the .ipa on a device (Windows or Mac)

To install your .ipa file on any device you can use either a windows or MAC PC machine.

1. Make sure that you have connected the device (that you wish to deploy) to your machine

2. Open iTunes

3. Press on the button that shows your device

4. Select: File -> Add to Library

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5. Select the path of your .ipa file

6. Click on the “Apps” tab

7. Click on “Install” button – it should change to “Will Install”

8. On the bottom of the screen, click on “Apply”

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Now the application should be installed on your device!

Let us know how this works for you. If you need any help, comment below.

Oracle ADF Mobile #{row.index} is Not Supported After Installing Upgrade Patch

You had a great application working in ADF Mobile, you updated to the latest ADF Mobile patch, and then suddenly the actions you perform on a list item aren’t working anymore?

We had an ADF Mobile application, developed in JDeveloper 11.1.2.4, that worked great. In that application there is a list of items, and when you click on a list item, the header of the Panel Page changes to the name of the selected item.

Everything worked really well. We upgraded the Oracle ADF Mobile extension plugin, and suddenly this functionality stopped working!

When clicking on a list item, the item’s name was supposed to appear on the Header of the page, but after the upgrade this has not been happening.

We went over the code and we noticed that the #{row.index} code set  under the  “Set Property Listener” property was circled with a red border. This means that #{row.index} is not supported anymore. We replaced #{row.index} with #{row.rowKey} across our whole project, and now everything is working as it should be.

To sum it up: Search your code for appearance of  #{row.index} and replace it with #{row.rowKey} so you won’t have similar issues!

After this went to print our ADf Guru Steven Davlar shared his code for a more generic solution that will work if the view object have a primary key as well. See his comments below.

His suggested code is:

change amx:setPropertyListener   from=”#{row.rowKey}”  type=”action” to=”#{bindings.<view>Iterator.iterator.currentIndexWithKey}” id=”spl2″ />

Comment if you have an other patch or upgrading issues!

Download ADF Mobile Patch: New Patch 4 Available Now

The Product Development Team for Oracle ADF Mobile has announced the release of patch 4, an update for Oracle ADF Mobile 1.1.  The new patch contains bug fixes and two new features: URL Scheme support and Custom SOAP Header support. I must admit I’m impressed, with how the development  team for Oracle ADF Mobile has been working they seem to release a new patch every few months.

Learn more about patch 4 and download it.

Lessons Learned From Oracle OpenWorld 2013

Oracle OpenWorld this year was full of interesting sessions and lots of lessons to learn from.

The major trends were not new but Oracle really seemed to be solidifying their offerings in the areas of Cloud, Mobile, and Social. I was especially pleased to hear about the new offering of the Oracle Mobile Cloud Service.  The Oracle Mobile Cloud is a service that enables developers and IT to create and manage mobile friendly APIs. This will make it very easy for mobile developers to integrate their applications with enterprise data and services. I was happy to hear that this really fits with AuraPlayer’s vision of having Oracle Forms as a back-end API for Mobile user interfaces. With this infrastructure developers will be able to create and manage many webservices each representing different technologies and connect their mobile apps to any or many of these API’s. I think this will really simplify and launch Oracle mobile development in the coming years.

But the most impressive/surprising thing that happened at OOW was actually how many Oracle Forms developers/ managers attended my session with Michael and Grant (Oracle Forms PM)   “The Future of Oracle Forms Applications and Developers“.  You can download our presentation here.  Around 250 people preregistered for the session and eventhough the session was stuck at 7:15 pm on a Monday night we had well over 100 people in attendance. Thanks to all of you who came to learn and show support.  Hopefully Oracle and the various user groups will take notice of the interest in Forms sessions and include additional Oracle Forms sessions in future events. You can see our amazing Oracle Forms on an iPad demo here.

Speaking of the future of Forms, it was interesting to hear in 2 separate sessions, customer stories of companies that had abandoned their original Forms systems and migrated to ADF or Java.  In both cases the migration took an enormous number of man-hours and a HUGE price tag to match and to be honest it seemed the customers weren’t thrilled with the results.

In the first session, Protect Your PL/SQL Know-How While Migrating an Oracle Forms Application to Java on Sunday morning, Stefan Kinnen the Senior Vice President of  T&P Triestram shared his experiences with a Forms migration to Java.  He discussed his upgrade process which was very ambitious, converting 154 Forms, 250 Reports and 400 DB packages to Java. In terms of budgeting, his calculation was that to migrate the 154 Forms it had taken 6 developers about 3 years to complete.  It also seemed that by the time the process was completed the technologies they had chosen to update to were already out of date themselves and now they are rethinking the technology choices. You can see his full presentation here.

In the second session, “Oracle ADF and Oracle ADF Mobile: Lessons Learned in Real-World Implementations” on Wednesday morning Frederik Ronn, Director and Technical Architecture of TIA Technology, shared some interesting statistics on TIA’s migration from Oracle Forms to ADF.  It took a team of 2 architects, 5 inexperienced developers, 10 external resources from Latvia and 2 experts from Holland a total 40,000 man-hours to migrate 300 forms; that translates to a whopping 130 man-hours PER FORM. You do the math for the price tag  :)

These statistics were fascinating to me because it further proves what I have been saying for years. To migrate your Forms applications will costs incredible sums both in terms of time and dollars so unless you have a REAL business need I see no reason to do it. Those of you who attended my session heard the Oracle Forms PM declare several times that Oracle Forms is not going anywhere, so why fix what aint broke. Especially if it will cost you 130 Hours per form! This also furthers what I tried to do in creating AuraPlayer where we provide an easy and efficient way to modernize Forms to webservices / Cloud or Mobile without the cost and risk of redevelopment or migration.  My  advice has always been and will be to stick with your current Oracle Forms system BUT upgrade to the latest releases, modernize the look and feel, and launch it into mobile and cloud environments. Then wait patiently till the next generation tools solidify since developing an entire new system is outrageously expensive and time consuming.

The greatest lesson I learned from Oracle OpenWorld 2013?  Modernize, don’t migrate!

Check out our photos from OpenWorld!