29Mar
By: Monty Latiolais On: March 29, 2018 In: Oracle APEX Comments: 2

As of March 12, we now know rather than 5.2, the new version of APEX will be 18.1. March 12th also gave us Early Adopter 2 along with eight new enhancements. Where does your favorite APEX 18.1 feature rank?

Biggest Mover Up: Oracle JET and jQuery Upgrades [ +2 ]

Biggest Mover Down: Advisor Improvements [ -5 ]

Highest Debut: Additions to SQL Workshop [ 5th ]

Previous Rankings: January 2018 | February 2018

Editor’s note: Every month, we’re power ranking the rumored enhancements ahead of Oracle APEX 18.1’s GA release. We’re taking the pulse of the APEX community, monitoring comments, talking to you all and gauging the interest, enthusiasm and expected impact of each of these enhancements. If you’re looking forward to a particular feature, make sure to tweet or blog about it. It just may affect the rankings!Power Rankings are based on a preponderance of social media.  If you have an issue with these Oracle APEX 18.1 rankings or have a question or comment for Monty Latiolais, send him an e-mail or contact him via Twitter.


        1. 24

          Column Toggle Report Region

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • The Column Toggle Report region from the deprecated mobile UI is supported on desktop UI.
          • Now supports refresh and page items to submit.
          • Now supports the Messages: When No Data Found attribute (desktop only).
          • Added Column Button Text attribute to customize the button that opens the column popup
          • Accessible table markup and Use As Row Header attribute.
          • Desktop changes/limitations:
            • CSS class names have changed so css customizations may need to be updated.
            • jQuery Mobile theme related options have been removed.
        1. 23

          New Application Shared Components

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

           

          • Application Access Control: Declarative app role management that can replace the need to create custom tables
          • Email Templates: Highly usable starter template and APIs to ease email integration
          • Application Settings: Declarative application settings set via an API or via the builder that can be used to control application feature function
        2. 22

          Accessibility Improvements

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • New Advisor Accessibility checks to check your apps for common accessibility issues
          • Removal of native use of accessibility modes, (we no longer need to use a mode to build for accessibility)
          • Updated Autocomplete item type offers greatly improved accessibility support
          • Numerous bug fixes improving overall framework accessibility
        3. 21

          Advisor improvements

          Last month’s ranking: 16th [ -5 ]
          • New Accessibility checks to check your apps for common accessibility issues
          • New Performance check for inclusion of compatibility JavaScript
        4. 20

          Interactive Report and WebSheet Enhancements

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • JET Chart integration
            • Supports the creation of Bar, Pie, Line, and Line with Area charts
            • New Orientation attribute
          • Automatic conversion of existing IR Charts to JET
        5. 19

          Reflow Report Region

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • The Reflow Report region from the deprecated mobile UI is supported on desktop UI.
          • Now supports refresh and page items to submit.
          • Now supports the Messages: When No Data Found attribute (desktop only).
          • Accessible table markup and Use As Row Header attribute.
          • Desktop changes/limitations:
            • CSS class names have changed so css customizations may need to be updated.
            • jQuery Mobile theme related options have been removed.
        6. 18

          List View Region

          Last month’s ranking: 15th [ -3 ]

          • The List View region from the deprecated mobile UI is now supported on desktop UI.
          • Fixed issue with nested list back button text not being localized (desktop only)
          • Refresh works for nested lists (desktop only)
          • Desktop changes/limitations:
            • CSS class names have changed so css customizations may need to be updated.
            • jQuery Mobile theme related options have been removed
            • Nested lists do not create jQuery Mobile pages so related widget options are not supported
        7. 17

          Universal Theme + User Interface Enhancements

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • Font APEX 2 is now available. It contains two sets of icons: Small and Large
            • Small Icons are 16×16. Large icons are 32×32.
            • There are several new directional and form control icons.
            • Some templates (cards, media list, etc) will automatically pick up the correct icon size based on template options.
          • Mobile UI Optimizations:
            • New “Top Navigation Tabs” template that can be used when the navigation position is set to top. This new template provides a simplified tabs-like UI and on small screens is automatically positioned near the bottom of the screen.
            • Standard Region and Carousel Region templates now support placing an icon in the region header.
            • Tree Navigation Menu items can be colored using Attribute
          • General Enhancements
            • Several templates, template options, and styles have been tweaked and polished.
            • Required asterisk for form items is now consistent across label templates
            • Carousel regions now support touch swipes
            • Cards have a new “Block” template option with more color.
        8. 16

          Tree Region Enhancements

          Last month’s ranking: 14th [ -2 ]

          • The Advanced: JavaScript Initialization Code attribute is supported. Although the attribute was added in 5.1 it did not do anything. So it is as if it is a new attribute in 18.1. This plus the jsdoc makes it much easier to customize the Tree region. Something that will be needed now that jsTree is removed.
          • Added Default Icon attribute. Allow Icon Type to be empty (without forcing a-Icon).
          • Improved Page Designer help text for all attributes
          • Support Dynamic Action Event: Selection Change [Tree].
          • Advanced Config option (nodeSelector) to support checkbox selection.
          • Tree region now supports the apex.region API.
          • Copy selection to clipboard.
        9. 15

          Item type Improvements

          Last month’s ranking: 12th [ -3 ]

          • New ‘Text with Autocomplete’ item type using Oracle JET
          • Responsive Rich Text editor – automatically adjusts to the region width.
        10. 14

          JET Charts

          Last month’s ranking: 13th [ -1 ]

          • Pyramid
          • Box Plot ( aka Box & Whisker )
          • Gantt Chart

           

          • New Chart-Level Attributes
            • Fill Gaps in Chart Data – Yes/No (defaults to Yes), applying data densification logic to multi-series charts
            • Sort Order – Select List with 4 options: Value-Ascending, Value-Descending, Label-Ascending, Label-Descending (defaults to Label-Ascending). Only available when ‘Fill Gaps in Chart Data’ set to Yes, and chart is multi-series.

           

          • New Series-Level Attributes
            • Display As – optional display of label on a Pie/Donut chart (default is Percentage for existing charts, but Label for new charts created via the Create Chart Page wizard)
            • Value Aggregation – for Table/View-based chart source type only, we now support the ability to declaratively select an aggregate function for use by your JET charts

           

          • Sample Charts app
              • Revised with new examples for each new chart type
              • New ‘Data Densification’ page to demonstrate the new chart-level features ‘Fill Gaps in Chart Data’ and ‘Sort Order’

           

        11. 13

          Text message substitutions

          Last month’s ranking: 11th [ -2 ]

          • For a given text message, for example, MY_MESSAGE, you can now use or v(‘APP_TEXT$MY_MESSAGE’) to retrieve the message text.
          • Use APP_TEXT$MY_MESSAGE$XX to return the translation text for language XX (replace XX with DE, FR, JA, …)
          • Same syntax is supported on the client via the apex.util.applyTemplate API
        12. 12

          General Mobile Improvements

          Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

          • Support touch for jQuery UI mouse interactions including draggable, droppable, and sortable. This can be seen in various places like page designer drag and drop, and adjusting splitter positions.
          • Expose touch events through Dynamic Actions for all apps (no longer just Mobile-based User Interface)

           

        13. 11

          APEX Spotlight Search

          Last month’s ranking: 9th [ -2 ]

          • Provides quick navigation and unified search experience across APEX
          • Activate by clicking search button from header, or using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Quote
          • You can navigate to most screens within APEX Builder
          • Quickly jump across applications and pages
          • Also works in Page Designer – can focus on page components

           

        14. 10

          JavaScript API Documentation

          Last month’s ranking: 6th [ -4 ]

          • Preview of JavaScript API documentation

           

        15. 9

          Social Login

          Last month’s ranking: 8th [ -1 ]

          • New authentication scheme Social Login
          • Supports Google, Facebook, OpenID Connect, OAuth2
          • New authentication scheme attribute “Switch in Session” for schemes that can be set in the current session.
        16. 8

          Oracle JET and jQuery Library Upgrades

          Last month’s ranking: 10th [ +2 ]

          • JET 4.2.0
          • jQuery 3.1.1
          • jQuery UI 1.12.0
          • jsTree 3rd party library is removed because it is incompatible with new versions. Tree regions will be converted to use the APEX treeView widget.

           

        17.  
      1. 7

        New Create App Wizard

        Last month’s ranking: 3rd [ -4 ]

        • New and improved user experience for creating applications
        • Simpler wizards for creating pages
        • Add “features” to applications. Features include: Activity Reporting, Access Control, Feedback, Configuration Options, Theme Selection and About Page
        • Customize user interface options such as Theme Style, application icon and page icons
        • Select lookup display values for foreign-key based columns
        • Leverage existing applications or UI defaults to default labels and form display types.
        • Select drill down report columns to declaratively link data in one report with another
        • Application blueprints: You can create applications by pointing and clicking, by pasting application blueprints, or a combination of both
        • Modify application attribute defaults: Control labels and form controls by pointing and clicking or via JSON Application Defaults

         

      2. 6

        Developer Toolbar Improvements

        Last month’s ranking: 7th [ +1 ]

        • When there is a JavaScript error on the page an indicator is added to the dev toolbar
        • New feature to see page performance timing. Menu Page Info > Show Page Timing. Show/Hide Layout Columns moved to Page Info menu.

         

      3. 5

        Additions to SQL Workshop

        Last month’s ranking: Not ranked

        • New “Quick SQL” utility: Provides a quick way to generate the SQL to create a relational data model from indented text
        • New Sample Datasets utility: Use these sample data sets to practice your APEX app dev skills

         

      4. 4

        Interactive Grid Enhancements

        Last month’s ranking: 5th [ +1 ]

        • Copy Down support and range selection; see new Actions > Selection sub menu (Fill and Clear)
        • Copy to Clipboard (for row or cell range selections)
        • User settable report setting Actions > Format > Stretch Column Widths and column attribute Stretch provides declarative control over how the column width will stretch to fill available space or not.
        • New Interactive Grid Dynamic Action events are added: Mode Change, Page Change, Report Change, Save
      1. 3

        Page Designer Improvements

        Last month’s ranking: 4th [ +1 ]

        • Property Editor
          • Updated UI to improve usability
          • Removed show common / show all, and collapse all / expand all functionality
          • When a property has focus, the group becomes highlighted
          • Improved ‘Go to group’ functionality
          • Addition of ‘Anchor’ attribute for link property types
        • Sticky Filters
          • Filters can now be pinned so you can filter on something and click across to other components maintaining the filter

         

      2. 2

        REST Service Consumption

        Last month’s ranking: 2nd [ No change ]

        • Create and maintain references to REST services (Web Source Modules) within Shared Components
        • Leverage Oracle REST Data Services features like server-side filtering or pagination to fetch only required data from the REST service
        • Use Simple HTTP for generic REST services, JSON or XML data feeds
        • Have Application Express automatically discover and maintain the Data Profile; no manual SQL or PL/SQL coding is required for JSON or XML parsing
        • Use Web Sources as the data source for the following components: Classic Reports, Interactive Reports, CSS Calendar, JET Charts, Tree Region, Toggle Column Report, and Reflow Table Report
        • Use the APEX_EXEC PL/SQL package in order to invoke REST services from within custom PL/SQL code in Plug-Ins or page processes.
        • Caching for REST Services: Session based, user based or for all users and sessions. Cache invalidation can be specified in minutes or with a DBMS_SCHEDULER calendaring syntax.
        • Ability to specify a “Post Processing” SQL to post-process the REST Service response (e.g. allow joining to a local table)

         

      3. 1

        REST Enabled SQL Support

        Last month’s ranking: 1st [ No change ]

        • Create and maintain References to REST Enabled SQL Instances (Oracle REST Data Services) in Shared Components
        • Use a REST Enabled SQL Service and therefore a remote Oracle database as the Data Source for the following components: Classic Reports, Interactive Reports, CSS Calendar, JET Charts, Tree Region, Toggle Column Report, and Reflow Table Report
        • Execute PL/SQL page processes on a remote Oracle database
        • Use the APEX_EXEC PL/SQL package to execute SQL Queries or PL/SQL blocks on a remote database, from within your custom PL/SQL code.
        • Caching for REST Enabled SQL: Session based, user based or for all users and sessions. Cache invalidation can be specified in minutes or with a DBMS_SCHEDULER calendaring syntax.

         

         

Jorge Rimblas“REST enabled SQL is something I’m really looking forward to. Clients will want to connect to all these disparate data repositories that were previously inaccessible or required cumbersome data conversions. Or worse, data syncing code. The code for synchronizing data is complex and complicated and if you need to sync both ways forget about it. The new REST Enabled SQL feature in APEX 5.2 promises a direct path to writing Classic and Interactive Reports that are based on remote data sources.”

2 Comments:

    • Khalequzzaman
    • June 24, 2018
    • Reply

    Gantt chart default one seems not applicable in commercial development in my case rather plugin at github for 5.1 works fine for me except colouring title based on value .

      • Monty Latiolais
      • October 03, 2018
      • Reply

      Thank you Khalequzzaman. We appreciate you reading and providing comments. Good luck on your projects.

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