Overview of Flexfields:
A flexfield is a field made up of sub–fields, or segments. There are two types of flexfields: key flexfields and descriptive flexfields.
A Key flexfield is a field made up of segments, where each segment has both a value and a meaning, which appears on your form as a normal text field with an appropriate prompt.
One example of a key flexfield is the Accounting Flexfield. This flexfield can always be customized to have as many segments as needed like Company, Department, Cost center, Account etc.
In an Oracle environment, a flexfield is a database field that has flexibility built into it so that users can define reporting structures that are relevant to their specific organizations. Two types of flexfields are provided: key flexfields, which are required to record key data elements in Oracle applications, and descriptive flexfields, which are user-defined and record data elements that aren't automatically provided.
A segment is a single sub-field within a flexfield. You define the appearance and meaning of individual segments when customizing a flexfield. A segment is represented in your database as a single table column.
For a key flexfield, a segment usually describes a particular characteristic of the entity identified by the flexfield. For example, you can have a key flexfield that stores part numbers. The key flexfield can contain the part number PAD-YEL-NR-8 1/2x14, which represents a yellow, narrow ruled, 8 1/2" x 14" note pad. Each section in the part number, separated by a hyphen, describes a characteristic of the part. The first segment describes the object, a note pad, the second segment describes the color of the object, yellow, and so on.
Oracle provides many packages with the Oracle server, either to extend the functionality of the database or to give PL/SQL access to SQL features. You may take advantage of the functionality provided by these packages when creating your application, or you may simply want to use these packages for ideas in creating your own stored procedures.
Oracle provides packages with various products, such as Oracle Developer and the Oracle Application Server. This manual, however, only covers the packages that Oracle provides with the database server.