Tuesday 23 June 2015

KScope Day 1

Day 1? Really, is that all? There are so many things going on it feels like day 3.

And I'm not even participating in everything since I'm also coming back to do some family time each day.

Chi Gung

I gave this a go this morning after not being able to find Kent on the first day. It was interesting and there were some good exercises that everyone should consider doing in the morning, though with respect to Kent, for me the woo outweighed a lot of good that can come out of meditation and moving your body.
I preferred the look of whoever the other guy that comes out by himself in the morning was doing. That's more my thing ;p

APEX Printing

The first session I attended today was by Paul Broughton talking about the 8+ methods of printing something from APEX. There are obviously pros and cons to each and Paul demonstrated some of the open source/free options.

His session was demo heavy and did well to combat some gremlins crawling through his macbook today.

Evidence Based APEX

My first Kscope session went well, though a little over time, for which I apologise encroaching into people's coffee time. I think it went well, people laughed at the appropriate times and I got some positive feedback afterwards.

I also had plenty of people in the oddly shaped room, and some very recognisable faces which was quite humbling.

Single Page Applications in APEX

Unfortunately I came in expecting more HTML5 solutions than JavaScript interactions, which I've been doing a lot of recently myself.

With respect to Dick Dral, since he had a great slide deck and promised a future blog post, I decided to take the oppotunity to listen to Steven talk about PL/SQL for the second half.


ODTUG had a great idea to colour code table cloths at lunch to help like minded people come together. I ate at a great table, had and interesting discussion with Morten and a fellow fairly new to APEX who asked some good questions.

I then decided to do some table hopping and meet a few other people, and listen in to what David Peake was rambling about to some other people. I also finally got a face (and accent) to Hillary Farrell.

Why PL/SQL developers are the most important on earth

Over I beer last night I heard Steven talk about his recent realisation that this was the more correct title for this session, and he ran off to change it.

He certainly has many passionate things to say about PL/SQL (no surprises there) but I think the best slide was his top tips for being a developer

  • Drink lots of water
  • Use it or lose it, work on your abs, stretch and more
  • Turn off TV, and other screens  
  • Go outside, perferably amongst the trees

Sound advice. And I think I do well with 3/4 of these, though recently I've been quite the consumption junkie. Writing a book doesn't help...

You don't lack APEX skills, you lack Oracle Skills

I was really torn between this session and seeing Peter's take on APEX worst practices. I personally probably should have gone with Peter, but Joel delivered some great tips for "citizen" APEX developers and it was interesting to see his selections.

  1. Use data model - even if you only have a handful, a picture paints a thousand words
  2. Don't do in PL/SQL what you can do in SQL - advice Steven and Tom have been delivering for years, it never gets old
  3. Know how to tune SQL - it's not just about indexing
  4. Avoid adding PL/SQL to SQL - and I will add become familiar with scalar subqueries
  5. Avoid DB links, this includes web services (see comments) - go local where possible, consider materialised views
  6. Use static PL/SQL - I emphasised this in my session, an easy win to avoid interpreted PL/SQL
  7. Instrument your code - try oraopensource.com
  8. Use the free analysis tools - SQL developer QA reports
  9. Never do in APEX what you can do in the database - constraints & triggers 
  10. Avoid write hot spots - I lost the ball here and missed his point, but it related to sequences and RAC
  11. He had another that he quickly skipped over due to time
  12. Bonus - get connected, APEX blog aggregator, database evangelists, and some major players on twitter
Turns out it was quite similar in a way to my session, just less sciencey ;p

Comedic Session (sponsored by InterRel)

I'm not sure how I forgot about this in my original post, but the comedic stylings of Don McMillan were featured in this session. I thought we was bloody funny, though I was probably one of the 1% of people that laughed at his joke on the Heisenberg uncertainly principle. I saw it coming, though he gave a great variation on the one I knew. This probably made me one of the uber-geeks he talked about.

Kscope16 location was also announced (Chicago) in addition to some other ODTUG related announcement, probably better described elsewhere, though I must congratulate Sarah.

ACE Dinner

I opted to pass on this one, though these events are always a great way to make new friends. I had some family time instead, first introducing my young Zara to the Oracle crowd. She found plenty to look at in the exhibition hall, and found herself a beach ball at one of the stands.

Open Mic Night

This was a really great idea to allow anyone to stand up without slides and just demonstrate APEX apps they had built. I came out with plenty of ideas but the standout came with an Australian accent. Ed showed a minecraft style world with content served out of the database. Very impressive, thought put him out of contention for this year's APEX competition announced at the end of the night.
The competition theme reminded me of the first real program I wrote with Pascal in high school, which was a wordsleuth type game. Unfortunately I'm not sure I'll have the time to give this a go this year since I better finish my book!

Had I realised the format and the limited number of spots, I probably would have done a very brief showcase of about 3 pages showing our tablet based application, which would really about how much time we've saved the users from mucking around with paperwork, spreadsheets, and using Oracle Forms over Citrix - not necessarily in the order.

Martin also announced plenty of activity over at oraopensource.com, I highly recommend you check it out.


A jam packed day were I kept forgetting it was only Monday. 


Joel R. Kallman said...

Scott - thank you for coming to my session, and providing your summary of the day. I hope you don't feel hoodwinked by my session. ;)

I just wished to clarify something. You stated:

"Avoid DB links, this includes web services - go local where possible, consider materialised views."

I'm hoping I didn't say "avoid web services". If I gave this impression, then I apologize. These are typically not chatty and very short and fast, and we support both WSDL and REST with APEX. Make no mistake - local to the APEX engine will always be faster. But to reiterate, Web services don't suffer from the same chatty nature of DB links.


Scott Wesley said...

Not hoodwinked, thought I regret not listening to Peter - I had been looking forward to hearing what he had to say. Bad decision on my part, lesson learned.

You probably didn't say that, I either misheard or guessed because I was too busy typing. Web services certainly have their place, but they can also be abused/overused. We've been at sites where this is certainly the case, so my interpolation was tainted.