Archive for December, 2013
I’ve worked with every release of Microsoft Excel, and I know it takes effort to keep up to date with certain releases. Clearly, the Data Analysis eXpression (DAX) Language introduced in Excel 2010 went unnoticed by many, which was sad. DAX is truly a powerful extension to the analytical and modeling approaches in Microsoft Excel.
I’d like to recommend Microsoft Excel 2013 Building Data Models with PowerPivot to those who haven’t learned how to use DAX in Excel 2010, 2011, or 2013. DAX works with tables but if you don’t use tables, I guess you can skip DAX because you must have infinite time to produce marginal analytical outcomes (tongue in cheek humor). However, if you’re like most folks, you want a book to get you up-to-speed quickly, and that’s what this book will do for you.
Just one caveat if you’re using an Oracle or MySQL database, use the prepackaged analytic functions before you download the data set. You should always pre-select data before applying analytics in Excel. Remember the more refined the data model you start with the easier it is to structure analytical tools to leverage the data model. While DAX is powerful, it doesn’t replace the speed and query optimized behaviors of effective Oracle or MySQL queries.
Raja asked a question but unfortunately, I was buried in the final aspects of the write of the new Oracle Database 12c PL/SQL Programming book. He wanted to know how to pass an object type as an
OUT-only mode parameter from a procedure.
That’s a great question, and it’s actually simple once you understand the difference between Oracle object types and other data types. Oracle object types must always be initiated before you use them, which means you must initialize any
OUT-only mode parameters at the top of your execution section, like this:
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CREATE OR REPLACE PROCEDURE reset_troll ( pv_troll OUT TROLL_OBJECT ) IS /* Troll default name. */ lv_troll_name VARCHAR2(20) := 'Bert'; BEGIN /* Initialize the incoming parameter by allocating memory to it. */ pv_troll := troll_object(); /* Set the name to something other than the 'Tom' default value. */ pv_troll.set_troll(lv_troll_name); END reset_troll; /
Line 7 shows you the trick, initialize the incoming parameter because there isn’t an incoming parameter for an
OUT-only mode parameter. The calling parameter to an
OUT-only mode parameter is only a reference where PL/SQL will copy the internal object reference. While the calling parameter has been initialized, the reference to the call parameter’s object is where the internal object will be copied. The local program must first ensure a new memory location for a new instance of the object type before it can act on or return an object instance to the external reference. More or less, the internal object is copied to the calling object instance’s memory location when the procedure completes its execution.
Here’s the source code for the
troll_object object type and body:
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CREATE OR REPLACE TYPE troll_object IS OBJECT ( troll VARCHAR2(20) , CONSTRUCTOR FUNCTION troll_object RETURN SELF AS RESULT , CONSTRUCTOR FUNCTION troll_object ( troll VARCHAR2 ) RETURN SELF AS RESULT , MEMBER FUNCTION get_troll RETURN VARCHAR2 , MEMBER PROCEDURE set_troll (troll VARCHAR2) , MEMBER FUNCTION to_string RETURN VARCHAR2) INSTANTIABLE NOT FINAL; / CREATE OR REPLACE TYPE BODY troll_object IS /* Default no-argument constructor. */ CONSTRUCTOR FUNCTION troll_object RETURN SELF AS RESULT IS troll TROLL_OBJECT := troll_object('Tom'); BEGIN SELF := troll; RETURN; END troll_object; /* Single argument constructor. */ CONSTRUCTOR FUNCTION troll_object (troll VARCHAR2) RETURN SELF AS RESULT IS BEGIN SELF.troll := troll; RETURN; END troll_object; /* A getter function. */ MEMBER FUNCTION get_troll RETURN VARCHAR2 IS BEGIN RETURN SELF.troll; END get_troll; /* A setter procedure. */ MEMBER PROCEDURE set_troll (troll VARCHAR2) IS BEGIN SELF.troll := troll; END set_troll; /* A function that returns the formatted object type's contents. */ MEMBER FUNCTION to_string RETURN VARCHAR2 IS BEGIN RETURN 'Hello '||SELF.troll; END to_string; END; /
You can test the reset_troll procedure with the following anonymous block:
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/* Enable printing from a PL/SQL block. */ SET SERVEROUTPUT ON SIZE UNLIMITED /* Anonymous testing block. */ DECLARE lv_troll TROLL_OBJECT := troll_object('Bill'); BEGIN dbms_output.put_line('--------------------'); /* Prints 'Hello William' */ dbms_output.put_line(lv_troll.to_string()); dbms_output.put_line('--------------------'); reset_troll(lv_troll); /* Prints 'Hello Bert' */ dbms_output.put_line(lv_troll.to_string()); dbms_output.put_line('--------------------'); END; /
If you remark out line 7 from the reset_troll procedure, you’d raise the following exception by the call on line 10 because the local object hasn’t been instantiated (given life). It means there’s no memory location allocated for the instantiated (instance of an object type).
-------------------- Hello Bill -------------------- DECLARE * ERROR at line 1: ORA-30625: method dispatch ON NULL SELF argument IS disallowed ORA-06512: at "VIDEO.RESET_TROLL", line 10 ORA-06512: at line 8
Hope this helps those trying to solve the same problem.
A neat feature of Oracle Database 12c is the ability to put PL/SQL functions inside SQL
WITH statements. It’s covered in Chapter 2 on new SQL and PL/SQL features of the Oracle Database 12c PL/SQL Programming. There’s a trick though, you must disable the
SQLTERMINATOR before creating the statement or accessing it, like:
SET SQLTERMINATOR OFF
Then, you can write a
WITH statement like this:
WITH FUNCTION glue ( pv_first_name VARCHAR2 , pv_last_name VARCHAR2) RETURN VARCHAR2 IS lv_full_name VARCHAR2(100); BEGIN lv_full_name := pv_first_name || ' ' || pv_last_name; RETURN lv_full_name; END; SELECT glue(a.first_name,a.last_name) AS person FROM actor a /
Unfortunately, you need to include it in a view to make the
WITH statement useful, like:
CREATE OR REPLACE VIEW actor_v AS WITH FUNCTION glue ( pv_first_name VARCHAR2 , pv_last_name VARCHAR2) RETURN VARCHAR2 IS lv_full_name VARCHAR2(100); BEGIN lv_full_name := pv_first_name || ' ' || pv_last_name; RETURN lv_full_name; END; SELECT glue(a.first_name,a.last_name) AS person FROM actor a /
Hope this helps those trying to use the feature.