APEX wizards create them for the delete process in forms, but I thought I'd describe an example of how you might use one for your own needs.
The sole purpose I've used them is to generate HTML text from PL/SQL - often for links to appear near text items. For example, you could use them to
- Provide a quick way to clear the text in a field
- Populate a date picker with today's date
- Generate a list of quick picks, derived from a ref codes table.
The last one is now superceded by a the Dynamic Quick-Picks plug-in.
To show the simplest example, here is how you can add a link to clear an item. First, define the shortcut as some PL/SQL that simply returns some generated HTML - the link that clears the item. Note we can use #CURRENT_ITEM_NAME# to substitute in the relevant item.
|Create APEX Shortcuts from Shared Components|
|Item property using an APEX shortcut|
|Final runtime result|
What I would like to know is why they're called shortcuts!?