Kscope15 Impressions

As per Jake’s post, we got to spend a few days in Florida to support the Scavenger Hunt that we created for the Kscope15 conference.  Since it ran pretty smoothly, we were able to attend a few sessions and mingle with the attendees and speakers, here are my impressions of the event.

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This was my first time at Kscope.  Jake hyped it up as a not-to-miss conference for Oracle developers and despite my high expectations of the event, it did not disappoint.  The actual conference started Sunday but we arrived Saturday to setup everything for the Scavenger Hunt, dot a few i’s and cross some t’s.

We also ran a quick training session for the organizers helping with the administration of the Scavenger Hunt and later that night started with actually registering players for the hunt.  We signed up about 100 people on the first evening.  Registration continued Sunday morning and we picked up about 50 more players for a grand total of 150, not bad for our first Scavenger Hunt.

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The number of sessions was a bit overwhelming so I decided to focus on the Database Development and the Application Express track and picked a few session from those tracks.  The first one I attended was called “JSON and Oracle: A Powerful Combination” where Dan McGhan (@dmcghan) from Oracle, explained how to produce JSON from data in an Oracle Database, how to consume JSON in the Oracle Database and even how to use it in queries.

It turns out that Oracle 12.1.0.2 has some new, really cool features to work with JSON so be sure to check those out.  Interestingly, our Scavenger Hunt backend is using some of these techniques, and we got some great tips from Dan on how to improve what we were doing. So thanks for that Dan!

Next I went to “A Primer on Web Components in APEX” presented by my countryman Dimitri Gielis (@dgielis).  In this session, Dimitri demonstrated how you can easily integrate Web Components into an APEX application.  He showed an impressive demo of a camera component that took a picture right from the web application and stored it on the database.  He also demoed a component that integrated voice control into an APEX application, this allowed him to “ask” the database for a row and it would retrieve that row and show it on the screen, very cool stuff.

That night also featured the infamous “APEX Open Mic” where anybody can walk up to the mic and get five minutes to show off what they’ve built with APEX, no judging, no winners or losers, just sharing with the community, and I must say, some really impressive applications where shown, not the least of which one by Ed Jones (@edhjones) from Oracle, who managed to create a Minecraft-like game based on Oracle Social Network (OSN) data where treasure chests in the game represent OSN conversations. Opening the chest opens the conversation in OSN. Be sure to check out his video!

The next day, I attend two more sessions, one by our very own Noel Portugal (@noelportugal) and our Group Vice President, Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), I am sure they will tell you all about this through this channel or another so I am leaving that one for them.

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The other session was called “An Introduction to JavaScript Apps on the Oracle Database,” presented by Dan McGhan.  Dan demonstrated how you can use Node.js to enhance your APEX application with among other things, WebSocket functionality, something not natively offered by APEX.  Here I also learned that Oracle 12c has a feature that allows you to “listen” for particular changes in the database and then broadcast these changes to interested parties (Node.js and then WebSockets in this case), this is for sure something that we are going to be using in the future in some of our demos.

The 3rd day was Hands-On day and I attend 2 more sessions , first “Intro to Oracle REST Data Services” by Kris Rice (@krisrice) from Oracle, and then “Soup-to-Nuts of Building APEX Applications” by David Peake (@orcl_dpeake) from Oracle.

In the first one we were introduced to ORDS, a feature in the Oracle DB that allows you to create REST services straight on top of the Database, no middle tier required!  I’ve seen this before in MySQL, but I did not know you could also do this in an Oracle DB. Again this is a supper powerful feature that we will be using for sure in future projects.

The second, two-hour, session was a walk through of a full fledged APEX application from start to finish by the always entertaining David Peake.  I must admit that by that time I was pretty much done, and I left the session half way through building my application. However, Raymond @yuhuaxie) managed to sit through the whole thing so maybe he can give some comments on this session.

All I can say is that APEX 5.0 was extremely easy to get started with and build a nice Web Application with.

And that was KScope15 in a nutshell for me.  It was an awesome, exhausting experience, and I hope I can be there again in 2016.

Cheers,

Mark.

2 comments

  1. Beer? There was beer? Somebody mentioned there was a beer tasting session somewhere but I never got invited :-).

    Remember, Pliny’s on me if you ever get to this part of the world.

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