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Create your own holiday dvd movie with freeware tools

Von Tobias Arnhold → 11.29.2009
This time my post has nothing to do with APEX nor Oracle.
You all know the situation. You are the one who knows everything about computers, at least thats is the opinion from family and friends. And of course creating a DVD movie from your last holiday should be as easy as a short *snap* with your fingers.
In case you are the one "WHO KNOWS" may this little collection of free picture/sound/video editing tools make your life easier. At least you don't have to google them now. :D

1. Download the pictures/videos from your camera to a local directory
2. Create MPG files from your video files (like AVI, FLV,...). Use the tool: Any Video Converter
3. Create a slideshow movie with DVD slideshow GUI
- Downloads and installs all necessary other tools like Avisynth, Imgburn, Xvid and ffdshow automatically.
- For movies DVD slideshow GUI requires MPG files
- Save the downloaded version of DVD slideshow GUI because it can be so that you wont be able to use your current project in newer versions of the tool.
4. Create a M2V file with ProjectX from your newly created MPG file
5. Create a audio file for your movie with Audacity
5.1 Download some music/sounds from Youtube which fits to your movie with DVDVideoSoft Free Studio Manager - Free Youtube to MP3 converter
5.2 Use the AC3 file which you created with ProjectX (4.)
5.3 At the end create a new AC3 file with Audacity.
5. Merge your newly created video and audio file with ImagoMPEG-Muxer
6. Create a new DVD (with layout and movie files) use GUI for dvdauthor or DVDStyler
- I would recommend to first create ISO images > less DVD trash
- As image loader use Virtual CloneDrive
- As DVD burner use ImgBurn
- As DVD player use VLC media player

Of course the handling will be tricky especially at the beginning. But the result will be a new level of presenting pictures and videos.
APEX-AT-WORK no image

Strange behavior of "No Inline Validation Errors Displayed" check

Von Tobias Arnhold → 11.19.2009
I had two conditional processing checks for one pl/sql process to do. One "No Inline Validation Errors Displayed" check and one "Exist (SQL query returns at least one row)" check.

I thought it would be quite easy to merge it together into a "Exist (SQL query returns at least one row)" condition:

select *
from user_db_links
where UPPER(db_link) = UPPER(:P1_I_INSTANCE_NAME)
and (UPPER(username) not like UPPER(:P1_USERNAME)
or UPPER(host) not like UPPER(:P1_DB_NAME)
or :P1_PASSWORD is not null)
and wwv_flow.g_inline_validation_error_cnt = 0

-- and I tried this AND clause
-- and (select wwv_flow.g_inline_validation_error_cnt from DUAL) = 0

The result was less promising. It just didn't work. The pl/sql process never run with wwv_flow.g_inline_validation_error_cnt in it.

My workaround was to add a new item called :P1_ERROR. I wrote the amount of validation errors into the :P1_ERROR variable inside a pl/sql process which was running before the one I tried the conditional processing with.

-- pl/sql process 1.
SELECT wwv_flow.g_inline_validation_error_cnt INTO :P1_ERROR FROM DUAL;
-- or this: :P1_ERROR := wwv_flow.g_inline_validation_error_cnt;

-- pl/sql process 2.
select *
from user_db_links
where UPPER(db_link) = UPPER(:P1_I_INSTANCE_NAME)
and (UPPER(username) not like UPPER(:P1_USERNAME)
or UPPER(host) not like UPPER(:P1_DB_NAME)
or :P1_PASSWORD is not null)
and :P1_ERROR = 0

This works without any issues. Maybe one of you know why this happens?

Page refresh button

Von Tobias Arnhold → 11.17.2009
If you want to create a page refresh button inside your APEX page you need to add the following things:

1. Upload a button picture (Shared Components>Images>Create>Upload)
2. Create a new navigation bar (Shared Components>Navigation Bar Entries>Create):
- Image: "LET IT EMPTY!"
- Icon Subtext: <img src="#APP_IMAGES#page_refresh.png" title="Refresh">
- Icon Image Alt: "Refresh"
- Image Height: 40
- Width: 30
- Target type: URL
- URL Target: javascript:window.location.reload(false);

3. Watch the result:
APEX-AT-WORK no image

Ignore sql error messages in pl/sql process

Von Tobias Arnhold → 11.16.2009
Have you experienced the case that you want to execute a process and when a specified error occurs then it should go on like nothing happened.

In my case I had several pl/sql processes and one was to delete a database link. In my special case there shouldn't be an error if no database link exists.

Here is the code snippet for it:

-- error variable
v_no_link EXCEPTION;
-- Map error number returned by raise_application_error to user-defined exception.
PRAGMA EXCEPTION_INIT(v_no_link, -2024);
-- About the error:

-- Drop existing database link
EXECUTE IMMEDIATE 'drop database link ' || UPPER(:P1_I_INSTANCE_NAME);

WHEN v_no_link THEN
-- raise_application_error(SQLCODE, 'SQLERRM');

More information: PL/SQL User's Guide and Reference - Error Handling

Using the APEX IRR search region

Von Tobias Arnhold → 11.11.2009
Hi all,

The APEX team integrated a nice little region template which mimics the search part of an interactive report. It is called "Report Filter - Single Row". As the name says it has only one row to implement items.

Using one graphical way for searching in your whole application makes life easier for your costumers.

There is just one thing I didn't like on it. The "Search"-icon. To erase it make a copy of the template and erase this part: <img src="#IMAGE_PREFIX#htmldb/builder/builder_find.png" />

The template definition should now look like that:

<table class="apex_finderbar" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" border="0" summary="" id="#REGION_STATIC_ID#" #REGION_ATTRIBUTES#>
<td class="apex_finderbar_left_top" valign="top"><img src="#IMAGE_PREFIX#1px_trans.gif" width="10" height="8" alt="" class="spacer" alt="" /></td>
<td class="apex_finderbar_middle" rowspan="3" valign="middle"></td>
<td class="apex_finderbar_middle" rowspan="3" valign="middle" style="">#BODY#</td>
<td class="apex_finderbar_left" rowspan="3" width="10"><br /></td>
<td class="apex_finderbar_buttons" rowspan="3" valign="middle" nowrap="nowrap"><span class="apex_close">#CLOSE#</span><span>#EDIT##CHANGE##DELETE##CREATE##CREATE2##COPY##PREVIOUS##NEXT##EXPAND##HELP#</span></td>
<tr><td class="apex_finderbar_left_middle"><br /></td></tr>
<td class="apex_finderbar_left_bottom" valign="bottom"><img src="#IMAGE_PREFIX#1px_trans.gif" width="10" height="8" class="spacer" alt="" /></td>

At the end it will look similar to that: