Sue Harper

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This blog is mostly about Oracle development tools; the early posts are about Oracle SQL Developer and SQL Developer Data Modeler written as product manager for these products. There are also the occasional forays into travel, conferences and a few mentions of the Delhi missions done. In 2011 I left Oracle, spent a few more years in IT and then switched completely. I’m now a full time picture framer. The blog remains, with no updates, in case there is still something of interest here.
Updated: 30 min 56 sec ago

SQL Developer Data Modeler 3.0 is Production

Wed, 2011-10-26 09:22
I'm please to say that SQL Developer Data Modeler 3.0 is now production.  The latest release is now available for download from OTN. There are various demonstrations available for you to get to know the new features and remind yourselves of other features.

See the main SQL Developer Data Modeler page on OTN for download links, new feature pages and demonstrations.

See the Oracle Press Release for more.

Data Modeler: Working with Different Database Sites

Wed, 2011-10-26 09:22
SQL Developer Data Modeler supports the option to create different implementations (physical DDL scripts) based on the same relational model (tables, columns and constraints).  The Data Modeler itself can be visualized as a model!  Your complete design can be made up of logical (ERD) models, relational, physical models and indeed datatype and process models. If we just think of the logical, relational and physical, then one logical model can be transformed or forward engineered into one or more relational models.  (i.e your entities can be transformed to tables) and then each of those relational models can have many physical models.

So you may, for example, do a generic logical model for an airline application, but transform it to a number of slightly different relational models (applying different transformation rules or perhaps different glossaries.  Now once you have that relational model set, you can have a number of different physical models. Often we have a test, development and production environment and want to have slightly different physical settings for these. We can do that in the physical model.

So let's assume you have the relational model all set.  Add new database sites using the Tools > RDBMS Site Administration as shown above. This invokes the RDBMS Site editor. Here you can add as many new sites as you need. They can be reused, so there is no need to be too specific, you only need to add new sites if you want more than one, say Oracle Database 11g, physical model in a design. In the next image we show that three additional sites have been added for the Oracle 11g Database.(click on any of the images to see them in full size)

Now return to the relational model and create the new physical models. To do this, expand the Relational model and select the Physical Model node.  Right-click for the context menu and select New. This allows you to choose the database site you wish to associate with the model. You can do this for each of you test, development and production sites.  In the image shown above right, there are 4 different physical models.

Once you have made the physical property updates for each physical database, you can start the DDL generation.  Ensure you select the correct Physical model from the database sites in the DDL File Editor dialog before you start the generation.

Cloning Sites
Now each of these sites will have all the relational detail from the diagram, so the tables, columns, constraints will all be the same. You've created the different sites, so that you can have different tablespaces and possibly user definitions, but chances are you'll want your sequences and PL/SQL code to be the same.  You can do this by adding that content to one of the physical models and then cloning the others from this. Select the new physical model and right-click, select Clone From.  You can now select the model you want to clone.

Dallas: OTN Developer Days and New Features

Wed, 2011-10-26 09:22
Last week I was sitting cross legged on the floor with the children in a slum in Delhi teaching them English and learning a little Hindi, next week I'll be in Dallas, helping folk start up the latest Oracle Virtual Machine packed with new tutorials and software.  The only link between the two might be the fading henna tattoo, which the girls in the slum did on my arm! Maybe more, the children in the slums were enthusiastic and excited to learn and often at these Developer Days we find that too. Too often we don't get the opportunity of sitting down for a day and learning a whole lot of new stuff and an OTN Developer Day is a perfect opportunity for that. 

Take a look at the details, how to register and where it's being held in Dallas.  Kris and I will be there from the SQL Dev and Data Modeler teams, so come and see the new features and learn more!

New Events, Travel and Updates

Wed, 2011-10-26 09:20
The product managers for the Oracle Database Development Tools have been involved in a number of events in the last few months and I have been on the road with them.  We cover different types of events; the larger Oracle events, our own training days and Oracle user groups. The audience differs at the events, but generally we try to tell attendees as much about our products that we can. Here's how the recent trip break down for me.

The first of the event types that we cover are the OTN Developer Days.  These are a single full day event and include an afternoon of hands on tutorials. My last blog entry was about the Developer Day we had in Dallas.  The team have done a few of these; Dallas was followed by one on Toronto and one in Chicago.  Our next Developer Day is in Warsaw Poland, June 15th. (Oracle Technology Network Developer Day) and offer 4 tracks for the hands on: Oracle APEX, Database (SQL Developer, Data Modeler, XML DB and TimesTen), .Net and Java. 

Another important Oracle event we support is Oracle OpenWorld, which last year had a develop-centric component called Oracle Develop.  We have just taken Oracle Develop to Moscow and Hyderbad.  The great thing about these events is that you get the hands on sessions and most popular talks from Oracle Develop in San Francisco.  So if you can't attend OpenWorld in October this year, then watch out for the spill-over events near you.

The user group events we support vary from product manager to product manager, as typically we are invited to talk at these.   I am UK based, so doing a few trips in Europe is a good option for me and this year I was able to attend the Norway Oracle User Group and Orcan, the user group in Sweden.  My last trip was to Cleveland Ohio!  I really like these users groups because the audience is either using the products we talk about or are looking for the features we have to offer.  This means the talk is useful for the attendees and worthwhile for me!

I've just added the ODTUG KScope 11 logo to my blog, as that's the next big user group I'm off to.  This is a great event to attend, there is lots of new news and useful information and lots of useful technical talks, presented by people using the products they talk about. If you can get across to the West Coast in June, that that's an event worth attending.

Expert PL/SQL Practices - Unit Testing

Wed, 2011-10-26 09:20
I wrote SQL Developer 2.1 while the product was under development.  As with all features in products, there is no guarantee that a feature will make a release until production, so it can be a nerve wracking process, writing, while things change as you write.  The UI is often the most fluid and so screen shots and menus need to be done as close to the release of the product as possible.  If you write a book after production you don't have the same problem, you just have to face the fact that in the IT world that if you do that, chances are that as your book is published, another, later release of the product is also published! It's a game of catchup. Regrettably, one of the features that I think is a killer feature in SQL Developer did not make it into that book.  Unit Testing was still under development as I was writing the book and the time required between writing and production of the book and the product was too great a gap.

All is not lost!

I was recently invited to write a single chapter for "Expert PL/SQL Practices".  A collaboration is great, because you only need to focus on one chapter, it's also harder to do, because styles vary and each author may have a different audience in mind.  So who ultimately buys the book is up for grabs. My chapter in the book is very much in the same style of my SQL Developer 2.1 book, (because that's how I write) and covers PL/SQL Unit Testing.  The book is available from Apress or Amazon and should be on the shelves soon.