Book Review: Oracle APEX 4.0 Cookbook
Title: Oracle APEX 4.0 Cookbook
A cookbook is a book that contains information on cooking. It typically contains a collection of recipes, and may also include information on ingredient origin, freshness, selection and quality. - Wikipedia
The APEX 4 EA release got available almost exactly a year ago. What could be a more appropriate anniversary present than a book entirely dedicated to and based on APEX version 4? I was very much looking forward to this book release, as this is one of the first APEX 4 books and the title suggests that there will be some recipes with new feature as ingredients.
In formal dining, a well-planned main course can function as a sort of gastronomic apex or climax. In such a scheme, the preceding courses are designed to prepare for and lead up to the main course in such a way that the main course is anticipated and, when the scheme is successful, increased in its ability to satisfy and delight the diner. - Wikipedia
The Oracle APEX 4.0 Cookbook combines the well known “Create my fist APEX Application” tutorials with detailed step-by-step guides through new APEX functionality. It makes this book suitable for beginning APEX developers. For more advanced developers it is a good reference while working with functionality, introduced in APEX 4.0.
If you are new to APEX, you can start learning APEX by working through the first chapter (Creating a Basic APEX Application). If you have read Oracle’s “2 Day + Application Express Developer’s Guide” (as a beginning APEX Developer you should have!), some of the recipes will look familiar. Both, the book and the 2+Day Guide will take you by the hand while making your first steps with APEX. The book’s introduction does cover more aspects but compared to the 2+Day Guide, the Guide offers more explanation and background. More advanced user’s developers will probably use the recipes when they need it, or browse the chapters instead of working through the whole book chapter by chapter, just as you would do with an actual cookbook.
Each chapter is organized like an OTN Oracle-by-Example articles and one can choose between try-to-understand or just get-it-done-by-following-the-instructions approach:
- Getting ready - prerequisites
- How to do it… - step-by-step instructions
- How it works… - short explanation
- There’s more – suggestions and explanation on extending or varying the recipes
- See also – reference to related recipes or documentation
All together, this book contains 80+ APEX recipes, varying in complexity ranging from “Creating a simple report” to “Setting up version control with APEX and SVN”. The examples are well selection and cover most of the aspects one has to learn when developing with APEX.
This book is a great companion when developing applications with APEX. The recipe’s format helps you to take the necessary steps to get your job done. In some cases I would wish some more detailed information in the “How it works…” sections. Much of the recipes are not new. Lots of information and How-To’s have been published on blogs and downloadable documents on the internet since APEX 4.0 has been released, but it’s very convenient to have them in one place in a book, nicely arranged by subject.
Have a look at the Table of Contents on the publisher’s site, to see if it contains your favorite dishes.