Programming Resources

The following are some programming related products and resources I use. You may find them useful too. Note that all items on this page are provided by people or organizations not related to SQL Snippets.


Oracle Database 10g Express Edition
This is what I run all the snippets on this site against. It makes a great test environment for trying things you can not, or should not, try on your development, test, and production databases.
Oracle SQL Developer
This is a robust tool I use for ad-hoc work like browsing database objects, viewing and editing table data through a spreadsheet-like interface, and playing with SQL and PL/SQL commands and scripts.
Oracle Drive
Oracle Drive is a WebDAV client that lets you map content in your Oracle database's XDB repository to a Windows Network Drive. With it you can drag, drop, open, edit, and save any kind of file to your Oracle database the same way you can with your local hard drive. You can download Oracle Drive from the Oracle Collaboration Suite Downloads page. Announcements and troubleshooting information are available in the OTN Portal Content Areas discussion forum.
ConTEXT Text Editor

ConTEXT is, without a doubt, one of the best code editors I have ever used ... and it's free! The features I find most helpful are syntax highlighting, the ability to search and replace text in multiple files with a single operation, and the ability to cut and paste rectangular selections of text. There is also this neat little behaviour in Column Mode where, after you cut and paste some text, it immediately jumps to the next line. When I have a list of 40 column names on separate lines and I want to prefix a table alias to each of them all I have to do is copy the prefix text from somewhere, hold down Ctrl-V, and then watch as it scrolls down the page pasting the prefix into the right spot on each line. After years of using it I still get a kick out of watching this feature in action.

Note: 2007-03-02 - The latest version of ConTEXT, v0.98.5, has some bugs. I am using v0.98.4 until a new release is available. Both versions are available for download from the home page.

Chris Pedrick's Web Developer Extension
If you do any sort of web development then this web browser toolbar by Chris Pederick is invaluable. It is packed with lots of features that immensely simplify debugging and reverse engineering web pages. Some of the features I like best are the ability to edit the HTML or CSS code for a page and watch the changes take effect in the same window, the ability to outline headings, tables, block elements, etc., one click validation of HTML or CSS code, and neat little tools like a page magnifier and floating ruler. It only works with Firefox, Flock, Mozilla, and Seamonkey though so you'll need one of those browsers to use it.
This is a wonderful little utility I use when writing SQL Snippets pages. I assign long strings of text that I use often to the number pad keys on my keyboard. Whenever I need to insert one of these stings into my editor or a web form I simply press the appropriate number pad key and voila, AutoHotkey types the text for me. My biggest problem now is that I'm running out of keys to use AutoHotkey with.
Nikita the Spider
I often use Nikita the Spider to validate SQL Snippets web pages when I make changes that affect most or all of my topics. It checks every page on my site for invalid XHTML code and looks for broken links all in one shot. And best of all it is an online service. There is no downloading or installation process to mess with. The service is currently (2007-03-02) free while it is in its alpha test stage.


Oracle Database Online Documentation Library 10g Release 2
This is a 'must have' for all Oracle developers. When they say "Read The Manual" this is where you find it.
Oracle Technology Network (OTN) Discussion Forums
A wealth of practical information is available here on anything that is Oracle. I especially like the SQL and PL/SQL forum and the XDB related forums. If you can't find an answer to your question by searching the archives (which is rare) you can usually get an answer from one or more very knowledgeable people within minutes of posting a new question. I would like to contribute to this site more often but I am usually beat to the punch by the regulars.
Ask Tom
This is a question and answer site run by Tom Kyte, a vice president in Oracle’s public sector division generally considered to be one of the Oracle masters. Hunting for answers on Ask Tom is like mining for gold. It may take some time and effort to find what you're looking for, but once you've found it the results are priceless.
This is a no-nonsense site full of useful Oracle information run by author and Oracle Ace Tim Hall.
The Oracle FAQ
I recently discovered this site and it looks quite well organized. You may find me lurking around their SQL and PL/SQL forums more than the OTN ones in the future. The action seems a little less frantic here.

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