Thursday Nov 29, 2012

Book Review: Oracle ADF Real World Developer’s Guide

Recently PACKT Publishing published "Oracle ADF Real World Developer’s Guide" by Jobinesh Purushothaman, a product manager in our team. Though already the sixth book dedicated to Oracle ADF, it has a lot of great information in it that none of the previous books covered, making it a safe buy even for those who own the other books published by Oracle Press (McGrwHill) and PACKT Publishing.

More than the half of the "Oracle ADF Real World Developer’s Guide" book is dedicated to Oracle ADF Business Components in a depth and clarity that allows you to feel the expertise that Jobinesh gained in this area. If you enjoy Jobinesh blog (http://jobinesh.blogspot.co.uk/) about Oracle ADF, then, no matter what expert you are in Oracle ADF, this book makes you happy as it provides you with detail information you always wished to have. If you are new to Oracle ADF, then this book alone doesn't get you flying, but, if you have some Java background, accelerates your learning big, big, big times.

Chapter 1 is an introduction to Oracle ADF and not only explains the layers but also how it compares to plain Java EE solutions (page 13). If you are new to Oracle JDeveloper and ADF, then at the end of this chapter you know how to start JDeveloper and begin your ADF development

Chapter 2 starts with what Jobinesh really is good at: ADF Business Components. In this chapter you learn about the architecture ingredients of ADF Business Components: View Objects, View Links, Associations, Entities, Row Sets, Query Collections and Application Modules. This chapter also provides a introduction to ADFBC SDO services, as well as sequence diagrams for what happens when you execute queries or commit updates.

Chapter 3 is dedicated to entity objects and  is one of many chapters in this book you will enjoy and never want to miss. Jobinesh explains the artifacts that make up an entity object, how to work with entities and resource bundles, and many advanced topics, including inheritance, change history tracking, custom properties, validation and cursor handling.

 Chapter 4 - you guessed it - is all about View objects. Comparable to entities, you learn about the XM files and classes that make a view object, as well as how to define and work with queries. List-of-values, inheritance, polymorphism, bind variables and data filtering are interesting - and important topics that follow. Again the chapter provides helpful sequence diagrams for you to understand what happens internally within a view object.

Chapter 5 focuses on advanced view object and entity object topics, like lifecycle callback methods and when you want to override them. This chapter is a good digest of Jobinesh's blog entries (which most ADF developers have in their bookmark list). Really worth reading !

Chapter 6 then is bout Application Modules. Beside of what application modules are, this chapter covers important topics like properties, passivation, activation, application module pooling, how and where to write custom logic. In addition you learn about the AM lifecycle and request sequence.

Chapter 7 is about the ADF binding layer. If you are new to Oracle ADF and got lost in the more advanced ADF Business Components chapters, then this chapter is where you get back into the game. In very easy terms, Jobinesh explains what the ADF binding is, how it fits into the JSF request lifecycle and what are the metadata file involved.

Chapter 8 then goes into building data bound web user interfaces. In this chapter you get the basics of JavaServer Faces (e.g. managed beans) and learn about the interaction between the JSF UI and the ADF binding layer. Later this chapter provides advanced solutions for working with tree components and list of values.

Chapter 9 introduces bounded task flows and ADF controller. This is a chapter you want to read if you are new to ADF of have started. Experts don't find anything new here, which doesn't mean that it is not worth reading it (I for example, enjoyed the controller talk very much)

Chapter 10 is an advanced coverage of bounded task flow and talks about contextual events

 Chapter 11 is another highlight and explains error handling, trains, transactions and more. I can only recommend you read this chapter. I am aware of many documents that cover exception handling in Oracle ADF (and my Oracle Magazine article for January/February 2013 does the same), but none that covers it in such a great depth.

Chapter 12 covers ADF best practices, which is a great round-up of all the tips provided in this book (without Jobinesh to repeat himself). Its all cool stuff that helps you with your ADF projects.

In summary, "Oracle ADF Real World Developer’s Guide" by Jobinesh Purushothaman is a great book and addition for all Oracle ADF developers and those who want to become one.

Frank


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