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integration and implementation of technology-focused business solutions

Tag: oracle apex

Oracle resources for developers of all skill levels

July 5th, 2016

Online researchWhether you’re in search of information about a specific application that you’re working on or simply want to learn more about Oracle, there’s a place for all of your needs - Apex.world.

What is Apex.world and what can you do there?

Apex.world is a community for the discussion of all things Oracle. Perhaps the most valuable aspect of this community is that it’s a place where developers of all skill levels can network and exchange information outside of the world of conferences. For many developers, this is a way to meet and learn from the best in the industry.

This forum isn’t only a place to find information about your projects. Apex.world also frequently features announcements about job openings, conferences, presentations, code sharing, and more.

What makes Apex.world so special?

There were plenty of resources for Oracle before Apex.world came around. However, these resources were very spread out. If you were new to Oracle and searching for help, finding it could be a daunting process. The founders of Apex.world brought all of that information to one location. Using the Slack platform, they made it easy for people to get answers from other specialists.

Who is Apex.world for?

To put it simply, Apex.world is a community for anybody involved with Oracle. Developers at all stages of learning will find content that’s helpful for them. Apex.world is also a great place for managers and recruiting agencies who are looking for talent.

The most common use of Apex.world, though, is to help developers finish excellent work. Developers value this community as a resource that will help them complete projects and get the desired results form Oracle.

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APEX Meetup in OKC

December 1st, 2015

MeetupFor those who work daily in the world of Oracle’s Application Express (APEX), being able to network with other APEX folks is essential. However, having the time and place to do that has been limited, until now.

LSG Solutions has launched the Oklahoma City Oracle Application Express Meetup. This meetup gives APEX specialists an opportunity to make contacts within the local Oracle community, while helping them stay current with APEX development.

This group is open to anyone who is interested in:

  • Discussing, learning, and sharing topics and presentations related to Oracle Application Express development.
  • Uniting Oklahoma City metro area professionals and aspiring IT students, in order to gain synergy from one another.
  • Discussing secondary topics involving technologies like SQL, PL/SQL, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and jQuery that are used to get the most out of APEX.

* Other Oracle technology and Web development experts are also welcome.

Due to this Meetup now being highlighted on apex.world, we anticipate a rapid increase of new members. We invite anyone interested in this group to sign up via Meetup.

We look forward to the continued growth of this group and interacting with other area APEX professionals!

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Sex Offender Notifications

October 6th, 2015

Easy alertsOver the past few years, we have continued to update Oklahoma’s Sex Offender Registry. We have worked to ensure the system is current and easy to access. We believe it not only keeps the community informed, but also provides people peace of mind.

One of the features we’re particularly proud of is the email alerts. Users can go to Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry, and sign up to be alerted when a sex offender registers their residence address in the radius of your specified address.

For example, you could enter your home address and set the radius for one mile. After entering an email address for the alerts to be sent to, you will receive notification if a sex offender registers an address in that radius. We recommend you register your children’s school too.

The feature also allows you to set multiple physical addresses for one email address. So, you may want alerts for a radius around your home, family member’s home or other location you frequent.

Benefits of the Alert

The alert feature allows you to receive notification in real time. As soon as an offender registers an address and a law enforcement agency adds it to the registry, the system automatically sends out alerts if the address is within the radius of a location you selected.

The ease of use is another benefit of the feature. You simply enter a physical address, a radius of 1, 3 or 5 miles, your email, and first and last name. There are no passwords to set up or remember. You simply need your email address to maintain your monitored locations.

Finally, when you are notified by email of an alert in your selected area, a link is sent with the email. You simply click on the link and are taken to the system. From there, you can search and learn more about the offender.

Our Commitment

At LSG Solutions, we are committed to the continued development and improvement of the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry. We believe a registry with current, easy-to-find information is essential in keeping the community informed. We believe this feature will benefit law enforcement agencies and communities alike.

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Ready for a change, software developers?

July 7th, 2015

Oracle DeveloperAre you ready to make the next move in your career? Maybe you have web development experience and are ready to transition into working with large Oracle database systems. Come join our team of talented and motivated IT professionals, who are committed to providing exceptional service to our customers!

Job duties include:

  • Serve as a technical resource for the LSG Solutions staff
  • Analyze user requirements and define application objectives

LSG Solutions has been helping businesses meet their technology needs since 2004. Known specifically for their quality of delivery, LSG focuses on a full life cycle approach to solving business problems with technology. LSG Solutions provides employees:

  • Competitive salaries with outstanding benefits
  • Continually trains employees for career growth
  • A culture that exceeds customer’s expectations

This is a great opportunity for individuals from any of the following career paths.

  • Intermediate to Senior-level APEX developers
  • Intermediate to Senior-level PL/SQL and Oracle Forms developers
  • Junior to Intermediate level - currently developing Oracle Application Express applications.
  • Intermediate to Senior-level web developers (PHP / Ruby / Python / Javascript / CSS / etc.) wanting to change specializations ... becoming more familiar with the Oracle stack.
  • Powerbuilder & Delphi and even client-server developers wanting to change specializations

This job is based in the Oklahoma City metro area. Interested applicants, please click here to submit an application and resume.

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Where does Oracle APEX fit into your business?

March 18th, 2014

oracle-ecommerce-integrationThe best technologies help businesses grow. But sometimes great technology doesn't age well, and years later what was once a great solution feels more like a burden.

If you are looking for faster results and lowered risk in your software projects or have been searching for a new platform to build or expand your business, Oracle APEX may be worth considering.

A refresher

LSG Solutions implements Oracle Application Express (APEX) for several of our clients and we like educating people about its capabilities because it's such a great platform.

For businesses who've been frustrated with long development cycles, APEX is often a refreshing option since we can quickly develop solutions that allow business owners to see the results of their investments early on in the project.

It also provides a good balance of flexibility and structure that lets us build software solutions that fit closer to business needs than most off-the-shelf products would. And since everything is web-based, the software we develop can be used wherever the business needs it-in the office and remotely on laptops or smart devices.

As much as we like the current version of APEX, things just got better.

APEX gets an update

Last month, Oracle released the Early Adopter version of APEX 5, the newest update to the APEX product line. We've been testing the new version and are very excited about all the new features and functionality that we're going to be able to bring to our clients.

Development time is even quicker than previous versions of APEX-time savings we'll be able to take advantage of in client projects-delivering your application sooner.

The technology itself has been improved to be faster and more reliable. With each version of APEX, Oracle has not only squashed bugs, but made the underlying code more efficient.

Front-end templates have been updated with the latest web technology, meaning they look much nicer and are more customizable to fit the branding of your business. This is especially important if your application is public-facing.

Have questions?

If you're interested in learning more about how Oracle APEX could be used to help your business, or have specific questions about version 5, let us know. APEX isn't the right solution for every business problem, but through our conversation we'll find out if it's a good fit for your business.

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How we helped TBS Factoring leave Microsoft Access behind

March 4th, 2014

logo-smallIt's not uncommon for business owners to feel trapped by the software they rely on. Maybe it's a system they've had in place for years and no longer meets their needs or maybe they're stuck because they haven't been able to find a better option.

Whatever the case, it's stressful and frustrating. Software should enable your business, not pin it in. Last year we were able to help our client, TBS Factoring, break free of the limits of their legacy software and start feeling more hopeful about the future.

Outgrowing Access

Microsoft Access is a good database product for small projects, but it was never meant to be used for line-of-business applications, regardless of how Microsoft sometimes pitches it. Unfortunately, many businesses rely on Access because it was often the only "easy" solution available to them at the time.

Years later, they find themselves fighting with the limitations of Access: sluggish performance as their data grows, limits to multi-user access, and poor reporting being some of the biggest complaints.

TBS Factoring was one these businesses. As their business grew, Access failed to keep up with their needs. They stuck with Access as long as they could because they knew how important data was to their business, but it was no longer a good fit.

So they called us looking for a better path forward.

Enabling success

Aside from performance issues, TBS Factoring needed a better view of their data. Custom exports to Excel just weren't cutting it. In order to give them the reporting and visibility they needed to make business decisions, we presented them with an Oracle APEX-based solution.

Although Oracle is well known within the enterprise sector, it's a less familiar name to small-to-medium business owners. But after looking at example applications and some case studies, TBS Factoring was on-board-"This is the solution for us."

We used APEX to create an easy-to-use, web-based front end that provided quick access to their data and gave TBS access to powerful reporting dashboards. The new dashboards gave them new insight into their collections process, enabling better, more-informed decisions to improve their business.

The new application is much faster than Access and can scale with the business as it grows, because an Oracle database is being used on the back end-the same technology used by Fortune 500-sized companies, scaled down to fit TBS Factoring's needs and budget.

Are you tired of fighting with Access?

If your business has outgrown Access or you're still fighting with a legacy database like Fox Pro, we may be able to help. Gives us a call or e-mail and we can talk through the challenges your business is facing to determine if Oracle and LSG would be a good fit for your business.

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Need a database application, fast?

February 4th, 2014

1-applianceYou just found out that your new application needs to be up and running in six months. So now you're scrambling to get everything in place in time. Researching, sourcing, and purchasing infrastructure for your application is going to eat into a big portion of your timeline. So what can you do to speed the process up?

If you're in this situation, an Oracle Database Appliance may the right solution for you.

An application platform in a box

Oracle's Database Appliance (ODA) is a great option for companies that need to roll out new database and application infrastructure quickly. Instead of having to research and source each hardware component, and then making sure that the solution you've built can be certified for Oracle's support, the appliances include everything you need to get up and running as a single purchase.

With their appliances, Oracle has implemented a number of quick start technologies that enable us to bring a fully functional networked database environment online in just a few hours rather than the days required to build a traditional environment.

Flexible, with room to grow

Past the short-term benefits, the Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) provide a solid foundation that's scalable and solid enough to keep up with your needs in the months and years after deployment. All of the included hardware is assembled with growth and dependability in mind.

Both physical and virtual servers within the ODA are configured for high availability clustering upon delivery. The chassis is also built to handle future upgrades so that you can purchase only the horsepower you need and scale up over time.

All-in-all, it's a high-availability platform capable of high-uptime and more flexibility than you might expect from an appliance-based solution. Even if you grow your storage past the max configuration, you can utilized network attached storage or shares to augment the appliance.

Affordable

Normally speed, flexibility, and dependability have a high price tag, but Oracle's Database Appliance are surprisingly affordable and available for significantly less than competing solutions from companies like IBM.

While pricing is generally straightforward, there are a number of options to consider depending on the needs of your application, so your best bet is to give us a call to find out a.) if an Oracle Database Appliance is the right fit for your application, and b.) which configuration would best fit your business needs.

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Why the Oklahoma Violent Offender Registry Needs Your Help

October 15th, 2013

The public reaction to the updated Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry (OSOR) has been overwhelmingly positive but one question keeps coming up across social media and the web:

“So there’s a registry for sex offenders. Why isn’t there one for murderers?”

Actually, there is. Violent offender registries haven’t received support at the federal level, but the State of Oklahoma operates a violent offender registry that can be used to look up offenders in your community.

As part of our work to update OSOR, we had to separate out violent offender data into its own system. A side benefit of that project is that the violent offender registry now uses much of the same technology and received many of same benefits of the updates to OSOR. It’s faster, more reliable, and more user-friendly.

Unfortunately, the federal funding that paid for the OSOR updates didn’t cover updates to the violent offender registry, so there’s still some room for improvement.

Map searches and location-based notifications aren’t currently available for violent offenders, but they could be easily added if the program receives more funding.

Without the federal mandate that oversees sex offender registries, the violent offender registry will need a champion here in Oklahoma to bring it up to the same level of functionality and refinement.

So if you’re a fan of the work that’s been done on OSOR and think it’s made our state a safer place to live, please contact your state representative and ask them about updating the violent offender registry. If you’re not sure who your representative is, the OK State Legislature site has an easy tool to find out.

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Improving the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry

August 6th, 2013

Last year, LSG Solutions was contracted by the State of Oklahoma to update the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registry (OSOR). In Phase One of the project we rebuilt OSOR using modern technology and gave law enforcement and the public better, more dependable access to this important tool.

The new OSOR has been a great success and now we've been contracted to continue those improvements and make it even better.

Beginning Phase Two

Phase One of the OSOR project was largely focused on technology. The application being used was outdated and difficult to use. Many features were broken and hindered law enforcement agencies' abilities to keep offender registrations up-to-date. In Phase One, LSG rebuilt OSOR from scratch and gave the State of Oklahoma a solid, modern foundation to build on.

In comparison, Phase Two is all about people. Now that OSOR has strong footing, we went to work improving processes and refining the application. Users had adapted their workflow to the quirks and limitations of the old system. Now we had the opportunity to ask them, "How do you want the application to work?"

Creating Priority

One of the first improvements we are working on is giving users a better view of important information. Users are spending a huge amount of time sifting through updates originating from local law enforcement because everything needing approval is being categorized into a few large non-prioritized buckets.

Critical updates about 3rd-tier sex offenders had the same appearance as minor notes and demographic updates. Because every new note in the system looked the same, everything had the same priority.

So we're using the context of the information that's already in the OSOR to highlight important updates and notes so Department of Corrections OSOR staff can be more efficient and deal with higher priority work sooner.

Refining the System

We're working closely with law enforcement officials and users at the State to tweak and refine all areas of the workflow to speed up offender processing and help officers spend more time on enforcement and less on paperwork and fighting against system limitations and downtime.

All remnants of the old application are being brought offline and the new OSOR is being migrated to a single, modern database that will be easier and more cost effective to update and maintain.

On the public front, we're improving notifications so that public users have more control over the locations they want to monitor and timely, informative updates when sex offenders move to their area.

As we make these changes, users are beginning to see the power and opportunities that the new OSOR provides and have begun to make requests for even more changes that give them new capabilities and make their jobs easier.

Phase Two has just started and there's already a huge level of excitement around it as we work together with the State of Oklahoma to make Oklahoma a safer place to live and work.

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Tired of software delays? Avoid them with Agile development

February 5th, 2013

The speed of doing business is continually moving faster, but for many businesses, big, long-term software projects still move slowly. And they often discover at the end of a long software project that the software they asked for two years ago is not the software they need today.

Fortunately, there's a path to speeding up development and getting the software you need, when you need it.

Managing projects the wrong way

Software development projects often look a little like this: After a series of initial meetings, a plan and contract are put in place with specific end goals and requirements. A development team then goes to work building something that matches the requirements they've been given.

It could be months or even years before the business gets their hands on what's being built, and in many cases, the launch to production will be the first time anyone finds out that the application doesn't meet the needs of the business, even though it might match what's in the contract.

It's possible that no one even knew what the actual needs were until using the software.

Everyone involved gets frustrated, and if the business decides not to abandon the project, the eventually completed application usually ends up being a costly, years-late mess.

At LSG Solutions, we use the Agile development methodology to prevent situations like this.

Agile to the rescue

What is Agile?

Simply put, Agile is a set of methods for managing software development that cuts out a lot of risk and frustration.

There are a several components of the Agile methodology, but the most important are a focus on delivering functioning software and a close collaboration between development and business teams. Those concepts may sound like common sense, but put into practice, they make the difference between project failure and success.

What does "functioning software" mean?

It's difficult to get good feedback on a project by showing someone a design document or a project plan. As part of Agile, we break applications down into smaller, immediately-usable components and get it into the users' hands as soon as possible. The business can start seeing the benefits of their new software in weeks instead of months or years.

This also allows us to get better, quicker feedback on where the project needs to head. If there are features that need to be added (or dropped), we can make those changes early on. This method provides a lot more flexibility than traditional development methods and allows us to adapt the software to new business problems discovered during development.

Collaboration is key.

Using Agile, we work more closely with our clients than a development company using more traditional development methods might. Reviews are much more frequent and general communication takes place on a daily basis. This frequent communication dramatically reduces the misunderstandings that crop up during lengthy development projects.

A close working-relationship between developers and the business team helps the developers understand the operational needs of the business and helps the business team understand more of what's possible from a technical standpoint. It helps both ask better questions, leading to better software.

Growing smart

The best thing about using Agile when working with our clients is being able to plan and build applications that solve the right problems and that can be adapted as needs change, instead of forcing the business to adapt to the software. Because technology should support business and help it grow, not keep it boxed in.

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CONTACT

501 E. 15th St., Suite 200B
Edmond, OK 73013
(405)285-2500
info@lsgsolutions.com