- Development for Mobile Applications - any product, software, company, fish in the ocean with a vision of the future should be considering mobile applications. The word "applications" can have multiple contexts here, but I must say even for websites - it really grinds my gears when I encounter what I'm sure is a new website that doesn't appear nicely on my mobile phone browser. Good on Oracle for bearing this in mind.
- Charting - "without using Flash", obviously the iPhone is being considered here, but considering the CPU drain with Flash I think it's great that other charting options are being developed.
- Error Handling - I'm forever updating the (ugly!) Error Page Template with some sexy scripting here, so I'm glad that the Apex team are starting to tidy some of the looser ends of the product.
- Interactive Reporting - Not so sure about multiple reports per page, unless perhaps they are little ones on a very dynamic page; but supporting newer database features like pivot queries is great to see.
- Tabular forms - Multiple on one page? I avoid them like the plague myself, but more functionality with validation would be good - wasn't that impressed with the 4.0 improvements.
- Mater-Detail-Detail - makes sense.
- Dynamic Actions - never has a declarative feature offered so much potential and provided flexible options, I'm glad this feature is being developed further.
- Plug-Ins - The community has really embraced plug-ins, you'd be mad not to extend it.
- Use of ROWID - this has been on my wishlist for a while, it irks me this facility wasn't in a much earlier release.
- Modal Dialogue - I can only imagine this is a JQuery dialogue, something I advocate and have used a number of times to help ensure the end-user takes notice of pop-up messages, instead of blindly clicking.
- Websheets - do people really use this?! Please tell me the initial Apex4 release wasn't due to dusting off websheets...
- Data Upload - if this is what I think it is, I can see many applications for it and I think it will help developers the world over from reinventing another wheel. Perhaps an adjustment of the Data Load facility in Apex utilities?
- Accessibility - I'm finding more clients ask that this is considered in the requirements, good on you, Oracle.
- Numerous functional and performance improvements - I'm sure in this random bucket of goodies there will be the odd pearl. I remember re-writing our Oracle Apex training application from 3.x to 4.0, and it really was the little things that made me happy - unnamed improvements that made my task easier.
- Column reordering - one of the most frustrating but regular tasks in development, aiming for that little arrow to re-order fields. Perhaps a drag and drop mechanism?
- Handling CSVs - depending on what that data upload improvement entails, I think it would be great to offer a black box that facilitates uploading a CSV file into an Apex collection
- Validation that communicates - it would be wonderful to construct validation dependencies, enough said.
- ROWID - I'll mention it down here too, handing DML by ROWID in lieu of primary keys is overdue.
And to top it all off, if Apex 4.1 is shipped with Oracle 11g XE, that would be super.
So is Oracle Apex heading in the right direction? You bet. All these focuses show that the Oracle team really are listening to the heartbeat of the development community - and of the web world at large, in my humble opinion anyway.