Getting started with UI development through Oracle JET.

An introduction to myself:

To give this blog some context, I intend this blog to be an insight into how I learn the different technologies I’ll be in contact with at my business unit at Capgemini, ERP Cloud Solutions. As a degree apprentice developer in the team the posts should have a technical focus and that’s about as specific as I can be at this point. Fair to say I’m just as interested to see where this goes as anyone else.

Preamble:

Oracle JavaScript Extension Toolkit is an opensource framework for building UI’s and with a couple of my team already well established in using the technology this is where I started my journey….

OJET Logo

How did using OJET benefit?

Oracle JET has been an excellent tool to get involved with and most of its strongest features have benefitted my own personal journey throughout. Firstly, the manner JET has selected its libraries (open source, reliable, stable AND widely known) has been exactly what I’ve needed at this point of my development. Along with this, the forums and community around the product are well maintained and you can expect a well-informed reply within a short period of time, another excellent resource I’ve been happy to draw upon. This without mentioning what I believe is the most useful tool for any potential UI developer who would want to use JET, the Cookbook (link below). The cookbook gives a huge number of ready-made components that’re fully customisable and available for use, these components found themselves inside some of my teams own custom built components too, so there’s no concern around a lack of flexibility.

creating custom components became simple

The task at hand:

To begin with I formed part of a small team tasked with producing a ‘visitor sign in’ UI the type often seen in office receptions. After setting up OJET locally and using the navbar template, one of the four templates OJET has loaded, in order to make use of the routing, single page application features in the product we set about building the UI. It’s fair to say it was a learning curve. Firstly, I had to build up a familiarity with the libraries in use, particularly knockout JS.

http://learn.knockoutjs.com/#/?tutorial=intro

I found this tutorial clear and concise and the multiple visits to the site to see what else I could use made it a good learning experience and aided my productivity.

creating projects with the pre-built templates is also useful

Overall, I was reasonably happy with the finished product. The UI was simple in design and as a team we made reasonable progress given the short time frame given. What will be interesting is now I have the chance to revisit that project how many of the new features (and I’m beginning to see most UI’s have scope for expansion) added in the mean time will come to fruition as planned.

Overview of JET Architecture

So whats next?
Once the work on the Visitor sign in was completed I moved into a more complex UI which took full advantage of the previously mentioned cookbook:
https://www.oracle.com/webfolder/technetwork/jet/jetCookbook.html
In the next blog post i’ll talk about how the long list of data visualisations where put to good effect and the new set of skills I needed in order to capitalise on them.

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