Category Archives: JET

Deploy NodeJS & Python3 applications on an Oracle Cloud Compute instance


DinoDate currently has both Python and NodeJS mid-tier applications and is backed by an Oracle Database.

The following instructions show how to deploy DinoDate to an Oracle Cloud Compute instance.  However, if you just need to deploy a NodeJS or Python application, the same instructions should help you install Node and/or Python 3.

If you don’t have access to an Oracle Database you can try the Oracle Cloud for free.


Download/Clone DinoDate to get the database scripts you’ll need.

Create an Oracle Cloud database.

Connect to your database as sys with sysdba and run coreDatabase/dd_master_install.sql.  (Use your password and connect string)


Create an Oracle Cloud Compute instance.

Open the ports for our NodeJS and Python apps.

Download and scp the following to your new compute instance.  (Current versions as of the time of this post.)

Open an ssh connection to your compute instance.  (Use your ssh key and the public IP address for your compute instance)

  • Switch to su
  • Update your instance
  • Install some tools we’ll need

Install both Oracle Instant Client files

Install NodeJS 8

  • Install some tools we’ll need
  • Enable the config manager
  • Install Python 3.5
  • Enable Python 3.5
  • Upgrade pip
  • Install the python modules for DinoDate
    • cx_Oracle
    • bottle
  • Exit scl bash:

Exit su

Add the following to your .bash_profile:

  • Create the environment variables  for DinoDate (use the JDBC connect string for your database)
  • Enable Python 3.5.
Re-run .bash_profile
  • Clone DinoDate to your Compute instance
  • Extract the Oracle JET files
  • Run bower install
  • Install the NodeJS modules
  • Use pm2 to start the NodeJS version of DinoDate
    The –watch parameter will restart the application if the files change.
  • (We already installed the Python modules above)
  • Use pm2 to start the NodeJS version of DinoDate
    The –watch parameter will restart the application if the files change.
‘pm2 startup’ will generate the command needed to restart our applications on boot.  The following will extract and execute the command from the generated text.

Try it out

Open a browser and pull up DinoDate:

  • NodeJS
  • Python

You can log in with any of the existing users, such as:

  • Bob
  • Admin

Use any value for the password, the application doesn’t check it.

Click on the Search tab and search for ‘eat’ it should return 6 of the pre-loaded dinosaurs.

If you run into any trouble, leave a comment and I’ll be happy to help.

Track-a-Watt – IoT to the Database: code walkthrough

This is a companion post to my Track-a-Watt – IoT to the Database presentation.

If I missed you at GLOC 2017, you can still catch it at KScope 2017 or OpenWest 2017.

I’ve packed loads of stuff into this presentation, including: soldering (no software involved), Python, Javascript, HTML, PL/SQL and a little SQL (there has to be at least a little SQL in any application! :-)).

Even if I had a few hours of presentation time, it’d be hard to do justice to all these different scripts in their different languages, without losing lots of my audience somewhere along the way. So the presentation keeps things brief and to the point, and I will use this post to provide more depth for some of the code sections.

Python modules

I mention that there are some names and labels used in this module that reference “5 minutes”.

I didn’t find any instances where a value for 5 minutes (300 seconds) is used in the functionality.  Five minutes is only used as labels and object names.

The declarations for these can be found on lines:

  • 103 – cumulative5mwatthr.
    A variable used to store the cumulative watts per hour readings since the timer was started.  We’ll call this total-watt-hours below.
  • 105 – fiveminutetimer.
    A variable used to store the time when the timer was initialized.  We’ll call this start-time below.
  • 119 – reset5mintimer.
    A function to reset start-time and total-watts.
  • 123 – avgwattover5min.
    A function that prints the current data and returns the calculated average watts per hour since the timer started.
  • 124 – fivetimer.
    A text label in the print statement.
  • 125 – 5mintimer and 5minwatthr
    Labels in the text returned by the __str__ function.

This is just a demo, so I didn’t rename these objects.  I only highlight these in case the names cause confusion after I change the timer to 10 seconds.

I only made one change in this module due to an error I received.  I have been running this project on both Windows 7 and Fedora 25 machines.  On one machine the values for p are passed in as Unicode and the other they are Strings.

The change here just checks to see if p is a String if so, convert it to Unicode otherwise accept it as is.  Thanks, Anthony Tuininga for making this clean and compact. to

The original code for the Tweet-a-Watt project has some functionality that I don’t intend to use for my simple graph.  I created the module by stripping out most of these features.

Average Watts/Hour calculation

As far as I can prove with my (cough cough) math skills, the algorithm used to calculate watts per hour works for whatever time slice you want to track.

I have not gone through all of the code that leads up to this point, but as I understand it:

  • The kill-o-watt is collecting a constant stream of readings.
  • The kill-o-watt X-Bee transmits the reading to the computer every 2 seconds where the data is stored in the array, wattdata[].
  • This code calculates and stores the average watts used in the last second.
To calculate the average W/Hr during our current time slice:

  • Calculate the number of seconds since the last reading.
  • Multiply the average watts per second by the elapsed seconds then divide by 3600 (seconds in an hour).
  • Reset the last reading timer.
  • Print the data.
  • Add the calculated average W/Hr for this time slice to the running total.
Here’s a basic explanation:

When a chunk of data comes in, we calculate the average W/Hr for the first second of that chunk.  Multiply that value by the number of seconds since the previous reading.  This gives us the average W/Hr for a 2 second time slice.  If we were to collect those slices for one hour and add them together we would have X watts used in one hour.

The cumulative watts used will continue to accrue until we pass the limit of the timer we’re using to determine how often to send the data up to ORDS.

To calculate the average W/Hr during the last 10 seconds:

  • Multiply the cumulative watts used by 3600 (seconds in an hour).
  • Divide by the seconds since the last time we sent data to ORDS.
The short explanation is if we were getting a consistent reading of 5 watts per hour for every sample, every 10 seconds this calculation would come out to 5 W/Hr during the last 10 seconds.  However, it’s not likely that we will get the same 5 W/Hr every reading so this function will give us the average W/Hr during the last 10 seconds.

I can understand if you’re a bit confused at this point. There seem to be a couple extra steps here than what should be needed for my simple graph.  I had to work out a simulation in a spreadsheet before I could accept that it was working.  However, I left the calculation code alone assuming that it may be needed for some of the more advanced versions of the project.

If your math skills are better than mine and you find that my explanation is wrong or you can explain it better, please leave a comment.

Oracle Jet

The Oracle Jet graph used in the example is the basic Line with Area Chart.  I’m using the Y axis for the W/Hr data and the X axis for the timestamps.

The graph has the capability to track multiple series of data which would be useful for multiple kill-a-watts, but I’m only using one in the presentation.

The relationship between the X and Y axises is positional using the array position for the data elements in two arrays.


This is a typical jQuery ajax GET function.

Inside the success function:

  • Get the items array from the response.
  • Create a variable for the X-axis data.
  • Create a variable for the Y-axis data.  Since we’re only tracking one sensor we can define the name value and initialize an items array for it.
  • Loop through the response items.
  • Populate the items array for our sensor (Y axis).
  • Populate the timestamp array (X axis).
  • Set the ko.observable objects for the two axises of the graph.

Next is a short function to call getData() every 5 seconds.


We copy the HTML from the cookbook for just the graph component.

Since we’re not using the additional functionality from the Jet Cookbook example we remove the highlighted lines (14, 15).

Go try something new

The goal of this presentation is to encourage people to go out and try something a little out of their comfort zone.  If you think your soldering skills are lacking find a maker group in your area and take a class.  If you are strong in one programming language try another.

This is a great project to experiment with, there are a few different skills all mixed together, each of them is fairly close to entry level and they are popular enough that there should be a lot of help available.

As always, if you run into issues feel free to leave a comment here or hit me up on twitter and I’ll be glad to help get you going.

I plan to update this post as questions arise.  If you’d like to see it all running together catch one of my upcoming sessions.

Three ways to make a REST call from Oracle JET

GET Data Into Your App

In this post, I will demonstrate three methods for loading data into your JET application using GET calls to retrieve data from a REST API.  You don’t need to know anything about JET to follow through the examples.  However, I do assume that you’re familiar with JET so I won’t be explaining most of the JET functionality.  If you would like to know more about Oracle JET, check out these resources.


The setup section will walk through creating a functioning JET application you can use to call each of the examples and display the data.  If you prefer to just read through the examples you can skip down to the REST GET Examples section.

In order to make the REST calls, we’ll need an application with a REST API.  I’ll be using DinoDate for the back end API.

Go to and follow the installation instructions.  Verify that DinoDate is running before proceeding.

DinoDate includes a JET front end that you can look through, but for this post, we’re going to replace it with the navbar JET template.

Start with a template

Rename the commonClient directory and create a new empty directory:

Install Oracle JET following the Oracle Jet Get Started guide:

Oracle JET is a very active open source project so the following may change over time.  If the version you’re using is different, try to locate the files mentioned in the following commands.  Locating the /src directory is required.  If you can’t find the rest of these files, the examples should still work, they just won’t be as pretty.

Alternatively, you can install the version of the generator used for this post instead of the global install above:

This JET template comes with a lot of pre-installed functionality added to the tempJet directory.  For this post, we’ll grab only the files that we need and put them in a jet directory

  • Create the directory structure ‘jet/css/libs/oj/v2.3.0/alta’.
  • Copy everything from tempJet/src to the root of the new jet folder.
  • Copy and rename the .css file.
  • Copy the fonts and images directories.
  • Delete the tempJet folder.
  • CD into jet.
Now if you haven’t already started DinoDate, follow the instructions to start your preferred middle tier.

Open a browser and go to http://localhost:3000/ (use the port for the mid-tier you started) and you should now see this.

Convert Existing Module

Rather than create a new module from scratch, I’m going to change the Customer module into a DinoDate member search module.  This way we can see what’s included in the template and how it’s ‘wired’ together.

If you’re not already there, navigate to dino-date/commonClient/jet/

Rename the files js/views/customers.html and js/viewModels/customers.js to search.html and search.js.

In order to change our the Navigation List Item from ‘Customer’ to ‘Search’, we need to edit js/appController.js.

Change the code on the following lines (Line numbers may change with future versions of JET):
22:  'customers': {label: 'Customers'}, to  'search': {label: 'Search'},

33:  {name: 'Customers', id: 'customers', to  {name: 'Search', id: 'search',

34:  iconClass: 'oj-navigationlist-item-icon demo-icon-font-24 demo-people-icon-24'}, we’ll use the magnifier icon  iconClass: 'oj-fwk-icon-magnifier oj-fwk-icon oj-navigationlist-item-icon'},

DinoDate creates a user token as part of the login process.  This token is required to access the API.  This process is not really relevant to the examples so while we’re in appController.js we’ll add a helper (cheater) function to make the examples work.

The $.ajax function will automatically log us in as the Administrator user and set the authorization token when the application starts.

The getHeaders function will be used later to generate the headers used by DinoDate for authorization and processing options.

Add this code after   self.navDataSource = .... , line 38.

Edit js/index.html and add an id property to the <div> with role=”main”.

Refresh the page and click the Search tab.

Prepare the viewModel

Edit js/viewModels/search.js

Add the Jet components we plan to use in our view, to the list of dependencies.

Change CustomerViewModel to SearchViewModel for the function name and in the return statement at the bottom.

Delete everything inside the SearchViewModel function except for var self = this;

Add a variable ‘rootViewModel’ to give us access to js/appController.js.  We’ll use this to access the getHeaders function.

If you used a different id value in the <div id="mainContent" role="main"  section above, use that id instead of ‘mainContent’.

Add some Knockout observables we’ll need for the view data-binding.  We’ll use the observable searchRun to display the method used to call the REST API.

Add a function to generate the URL for the search API.

Stub in the search functions.

Change the View

Now let’s switch over to our view, edit js/views/search.html.

Delete the all of the HTML in the file.

If you want to dig into the details on the components we’re using you can check out the CookBook.  For this example, we’ll just identify the components we’re using.

Add an ojInputText and an ojInputNumber to accept our search criteria for a Keyword and Distance.  Set their values to the correct observables in the viewModel.

Add three ojButton components, one for each method we’re going to demonstrate. We’ll set them to be disabled until the token in appController.js is populated to prevent querying before we’re logged in.

Display which search function as been run and add an ojTable component to display the returned data.

And finally, an ojPagingControl to add pagination controls.

Notice the data property for the table and paging controls are both using the same ko.observable, memberData.

The setup is complete, let’s flesh out our search functions.

REST GET Examples


Using the viewModel method is typically the default approach for making REST calls in JET.  The JET components (oj.Model and oj.Collection) implement a lot of functionality behind the scenes allowing you to focus on your application instead of generic plumbing.

  • Define the Member model by extending oj.Model .  Since we don’t plan to do any single record functions, we only need to define the idAttribute of a Member.
  • Define a collection of by extending oj.Collection.
  • Set the base URL for the REST API.
  • Set the model to Member, which we defined above.
  • Set customURL to our getHeaders function in appController.js.  This adds the headers needed for DinoDate.
  • Parse the returned object and return the member array ‘items’.
    Sometimes we only need part of the data returned by the REST API, so we need to define a function to parse the response.  For our examples, all we need is the members.items array.  If your REST API returns only the array, you shouldn’t need to define a parse function at all.
  • Create a new Members collection.
  • Create the members variable using membersColl to create a new oj.CollectionTableDataSource which is then used to create a new oj.PagingTableDataSource.
  • Modify the URL of membersColl using the searchURL function.  This will create the URL using the ko.observables keywords and maxDistance.
  • Call the fetch function.
  • Set self.memberData(self.members); after the fetch() has returned.

Replace the stubbed searchViewModel function with this code.

In your browser, refresh your page and search for the letter ‘a’ using the ViewModel button. You should see a list of Member names. The ojPagingControl defines a page as 10 records so you may have multiple pages of members.

Shared Model

Sometimes you will want to use the same Model and/or Collection across multiple functions or viewModels.  Trying to keep our application as DRY as possible, we’ll move the model and collection definitions out to their own files.

Let’s create a new directory /js/models  and two new files /js/models/Member.js  and /js/models/Members.js .

For both files, we’ll define components we need to include and also add the variable rootViewModel.

In Member.js, we’ll create a Members Model.  This model could be used by itself to work with a single Member object, see oj.Model for more information.

  • Create a Member by extending oj.Model, as shown in the last example.
  • Add the urlRoot for the members endpoint of your RESTFull API.
  • The customURL property is used for the DinoDate headers, just like in the previous Collection example.  If your application doesn’t need to modify the headers, you could exclude this property.
  • Return the new Model.

Edit Member.js and add the following code.

For our Members Collection:

  • Add the new member model to the define dependencies array.
  • Accept the member model as an argument to the function.
  • Create a Members collection by extending oj.Collection, like in the last viewModel example.
  • Set the URL.  In this case, it’s the same as the rootUrl for Member.
  • Set the model to Member.
  • We use the customURL for the DinoDate headers, the same as in the other examples.
  • Parse the returned object.  When DinoDate returns a set of members it includes some extra data.  We are only interested in the items array.
  • Return the collection.

Edit Members.js and add the following code.

Back to search.js.

Include our new collection in the define dependencies array, add ‘models/Members’ right after ‘jquery’.

Accept the Members Collection into the function definition by adding the Members argument.

To flesh out the searchSharedModel function we simply copy the code from searchViewModel() excluding the Model and Collection definitions.

  • Create a new Members collection.
  • Create the members variable using membersColl to create a new oj.CollectionTableDataSource which is then used to create a new oj.PagingTableDataSource.
  • Modify the URL of membersColl using the searchURL function.  This will create the URL using the ko.observables keywords and maxDistance.
  • Call the fetch function.
  • Set self.memberData(self.members); after the fetch() has returned.

Replace the stubbed searchSharedModel function with this code.

Refresh your page and search for ‘a’ again using the Shared Model button, you should see the same results as the ViewModel button.


Sometimes you may need some specific functionality not supported by the framework.  If extending oj.Collection or oj.Model doesn’t meet all of your needs, you can use the jQuery ajax method.

  • We’re using a standard $.ajax call with a type of “GET”.
  • Set the headers needed by DinoDate using the getHeaders() function in appController.js.
  • The searchURL function will create the URL using the ko.observables keywords and maxDistance.
  • Assuming everything is setup properly and we get a successful response we need to create the proper object types for the Jet components we’re using in the view.
    • Since we are using a paging control, we’ll need an oj.PagingTableDataSource object which we’ll create from an oj.ArrayTableDataSource object.
    • The oj.ArrayTableDataSource object is created from the items array returned in the GET response.
    • We also need to identify the idAttribute of our returned objects, which is ‘memberId’.
  • Finally, we’ll set the Knockout Observable self.memberData to our new resData object.
  • If there’s a failure, show it in an alert.

Replace the stubbed searchAJAX function with this code.

Refresh your page and search for ‘a’ using the AJAX button, you should see the same results as the other buttons.

If you are watching the execution time in the returned object, be aware that the time is only tracking the call from the middle tier to the database, so these changes to the client side code do not affect the execution time. Any differences for these examples should be ignored.

Be Flexible

As you build applications with Oracle JET, you will probably use the viewModel method the most.  However, don’t be afraid to use other methods when they make more sense for your application. It is perfectly acceptable to mix and match these different approaches as needed. Use the shared model to try and stay DRY and the AJAX method for special cases.

As the saying goes; When you only have a hammer, everything looks like a nail.  Keep your toolbox full.