This compact guide provides the jump-start Oracle developers need to make the transition from traditional programming to the development of useful Web applications for Oracle8i. Even readers who start out knowing nothing about HTML, PL/SQL, or Oracle's other tools will learn how to create simple Web applications in a matter of days. The book focuses on Oracle8i, but also covers Web development for earlier Oracle versions (Oracle8 and Oracle7).Background:The explosion in the use of the Internet and the Web has resulted in a whole new way of doing business. Developers who only yesterday were using COBOL to write accounts payable systems are now being asked to create a broad range of new Internet-based applications ranging from electronic commerce (e-commerce) Web sites to internal data warehouses to enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. Unfortunately, the filesystem architectures of most Web systems aren't up to the task. The new breed of Web applications -- which are quickly becoming critical resources that companies need to survive -- demand a platform that provides production-quality tools for content management, application development, and application integration. And current Web techniques are inadequate in many ways.Oracle8i, Oracle's "Internet database," gives Web developers a way to build Web technology on top of a relational database, rather than on a traditional filesystem. With Oracle8i, companies can apply well understood, reliable, production-quality database methodologies to Web content management. Oracle8i also supports a wide variety of application development platforms and tools that are tightly integrated to the core database. Finally, Oracle8i supports technologies that help companies tie their Web-based applications into legacy applications.There is a lot to learn in Oracle8i. Not only does it enhance basic database features, it introduces Java and a variety of Web development tools. Oracle8i provides a soup-to-nuts platform for Web site and Web application development that extends traditional database concepts to Web content. It replaces the traditional filesystem used by most Web servers with a database management system.Many users are intimidated by the vast array of new technologies in Oracle8i. And yet, they are under pressure to use these technologies to build complex Web applications right now. This book gives such users a way to start using Oracle8i immediately to create useful Web applications. It is a concise, easy-to-read guide to the basic technologies developers need to understand in order to build Web applications.Contains:The book describes the following Web development tools:
PL/SQL-- a structured programming language that combines procedural constructs and standard SQL. It offers such features as cursors, loops, conditional and sequential control statements, exception handlers, records, tables, and constructs for developing modular code (functions, procedures, and packages).
PL/SQL Toolkit -- a set of PL/SQL packages supplied by Oracle for use in developing Web applications.
HTML -- an ASCII-based markup language used to create Web pages.
WebDB -- A software system for building, monitoring, and creating content-driven Web sites; it allows users to use a Web browser to access and store information in the Oracle8i database.
Oracle Application Server (OAS) -- an extensible Web server that uses plug-in programs called cartridges to allow database-integrated Web systems to be developed in a variety of languages (e.g., PL/SQL, Java, Perl).
XML -- An emerging standard for creating self-describing documents. It is similar to HTML but allows you to create your own markup tags. XML is expected to be a key technology in electronic commerce systems.
The book also presents several fully realized sample Web applications that will teach you how to build such applications of your own.
NOTE: Although this book touches on the Java features of Oracle8i, it doesn't cover Java development per se. Switching to Java represents an enormous change for most Oracle developers. This book provides an evolutionary path for readers who want to do useful Oracle8i Web development now, using mostly familiar tools. Additional books will provide Java training for those who have mastered these Web tools and want to take the next step.
Chapter 1 Introduction
The Internet Grows Up
Current Web Techniques Are Inadequate
A Roadmap to Oracle8i
Chapter 2 Foundations
Content Delivery Model
Database Security Review
Chapter 3 WebDB
Overview of WebDB
Chapter 4 Oracle Application Server (OAS)
How OAS Returns Web Resources
Creating Dynamic Resources
Chapter 5 HTML
Programming in HTML
A Whirlwind Tour
Chapter 6 PL/SQL
Structured Programming in PL/SQL
Chapter 7 The PL/SQL Toolkit
Communicating with the Outside World
Chapter 8 Developing Applications
Designing a Web Application
Example 1: An Anonymous Survey
Example 2: A Discussion Forum
Chapter 9 XML
Motivations for XML
The Document Type Definition (DTD)
The XML Parser
Example: Generating an XML Invoice from Oracle
PLSXML Utilities and Demos
XML and iFS
Appendix Appendix: Resources for the Oracle Web Developer
Andrew Odewahn is a writer and software entrepreneur. With an MBA from New York University's Stern School of Business, he has an exceptional ability to find creative yet practical solutions to real-life business problems. The author of Oracle Web Applications (O'Reilly, 1999) and co-author of Oracle PL/SQL Workbook (O'Reilly, 2000), Andrew specializes in database technology. While not writing or designing software, he and his wife travel whenever they can. Their adventures include riding Lipizzaner stallions at a Slovenian casino, speeding down an alpine slide deep in the jungles of Vietnam, hiking (and riding the occasional ski lift!) across the Swiss Alps, hosteling in a Soviet-era sanitarium, and circumnavigating New Zealand's "Mount Doom." They currently live in Maine.
Our look is the result of reader comments, our own experimentation, and feedback from distribution channels. Distinctive covers complement our distinctive approach to technical topics, breathing personality and life into potentially dry subjects. The animal on the cover of Oracle Web Applications: PL/SQL Developer's Introduction is a boll weevil. The boll weevil is one of several snout beetles with a small beak or snout, which it uses to puncture the flower buds of the cotton crop as well as the fruits, which are known as bolls.The boll weevil is regarded as a notorious pest-possibly the most destructive insect in North America-for its devastation of cotton crops in the southern United States since its migration from Mexico in the late 1800s. Although 90 percent of adult boll weevils die over the winter, the egg cycle from larva to adult takes only three weeks, so in one year between four and seven generations can be born. It's estimated that boll weevils destroy 10 percent of the cotton crop per year, which amounts to over $200 million in damage and affects at least 13 states in the U.S. Controlling the population of this small beetle is very difficult, as the chemicals that can eradicate them often cause too much environmental pollution to be safely used.These beetles are not despised everywhere, however. The town of Enterprise, Alabama, is home to the Boll Weevil Monument-the world's only known monument to a pest. When boll weevils proved so destructive to their cotton crops in the early 1900s, farmers in this Alabama town (as well as across the Southeast) had no other recourse but to grow crops other than cotton, including hay, potatoes, and corn. Peanuts, however, were the most profitable crop, and brought so much wealth to the area that the town decided to erect a monument honoring the boll weevil, without whom the town never would have experienced such prosperity. Madeleine Newell was the production editor and copyeditor for Oracle Web Applications: PL/SQL Developer's Introduction. Clairemarie Fisher O'Leary proofread the book; Ellie Cutler and Nicole Arigo provided quality control. Mike Sierra provided FrameMaker technical support. The index was written by Pamela Murray. Edie Freedman designed the cover of this book, using an illustration created by Lorrie LeJeune. The cover layout was produced by Kathleen Wilson with QuarXPress 3.32 using the ITC Garamond font. Whenever possible, our books use RepKover?, a durable and flexible lay-flat binding. If the page count exceeds RepKover's limit, perfect binding is used. The inside layout was designed by Alicia Cech, based on a series design by Nancy Priest, and was implemented in FrameMaker 5.5 by Mike Sierra. The text and heading fonts are ITC Garamond Light and Garamond Book. The illustrations that appear in the book were produced by Rhon Porter and Robert Romano using Macromedia FreeHand 8 and Adobe Photoshop 5. This colophon was written by Nicole Arigo.
Comments about O'Reilly Media Oracle Web Applications: PL/SQL Developer's Intro:
This is really a very nice easy to read book for anyone who is interested in the web related tools, sql or even if one just wants a general overview of the subject. The book is very well written and I think, Andrew Odewahn has really done a very good job at keeping the readers interest alive. This is especially true for novices like me who are learning this stuff out of necessity, rather than interest alone.