Business Course introducing ApEx and SOA for High Schools/Universities

This week me and Nathalie Roman (Oracle Fusion Middleware developer of the year) went to a High School in Antwerp to organize a 3-day theoretical and practical course about APEX and SOA.

During these 3 days we gave the students insight in what SOA and ApEx is all about and what they can achieve with it.

A short summary:

Day 1
Nathalie introduced iAdvise as an innovative Oracle Company that is active in Oracle Fusion Middleware, SOA Governance, Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence, Infrastructure and Hosting and of course front-end development using ADF, Java Open Source Technology, Client/Server technologies (such as Forms), Flex and of course ApEx. After that we did an overview for the three days and Nathalie started with her presentation on SOA.

When Nathalie was finished It was my turn. I gave the students a full presentation about ApEx with a live demo. For my demo I had an excel file with some data and asked some students to give me a realistic guess on how long it would take to build an online application starting from my excel data. Answers from 30 to 50 minutes were given so students were immediately very interested when they saw that I could make such an functional application in under 2 minutes.

In the afternoon we started with a hands-on Apex session. As I expected most of the students had no problem building some basic reports and forms, their first impression was that the tool is very quick and easy to use.

Day 2
Our second day started with the assignment of making another apex application, after that an introduction to web services and bpel was given by Nathalie. In this presentation Nathalie gave an insight in web services, the difference between synchronous and asynchronous threading and how the different API’s can be used for authentication/authorization/encryption … After an insight into web services, Nathalie explained the main differences between BPEL and ESB using some common use cases. Using these Use Cases the students could anticipate when to use which methodology when functional requirements were outlined.

For BPEL Nathalie also explained the importance of BPMN so business processes could be analyzed and automated within a governance-structure with as well IT, business as analysts as the key stakeholders. After the theoretical part we gave the students an hands-on introduction to web services and bpel processes. The bpel process was used to automate the HRM application that was build in ApEx.

Day 3
On day 3 the students made their second BPEL process and saw a little bit of ESB. In the afternoon we expanded the earlier made ApEx applications with the pl/sql webservice we made. Students learned how to call a webservice using the apex wizard and also using the manually manual option. They had to construct the soap envelope and got a better insight in the whole process.

Me and Nathalie were very satisfied after 3 days, all students were very interested in the oracle technology and a lot of students realized that you can do a lot more with sql and pl/sql then they had done before.


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About Olivier Dupont