Toad provides easy creation of SQL. The previously mentioned Describe Objects panel enables you to drag and drop columns out of any table object into the SQL Editor. You can also enter the table name (or table alias) with a single period, the table name, another period, and partial leading column spelling, and Toad will pop up a box containing your table object columns and column attributes. Figure 3.20 shows a table with just a single period.
FIGURE 3.20 Toad Insights pop-up panel
You can double-click a column in this pop-up window, or multiple select using the mouse and either the Shift (list of items) or Ctrl buttons (specific items in the list) and then press the Enter or Return key to add the items to your code at the current cursor position. Notice in Figure 3.21, three columns were selected, and Toad qualified each with the table name! If you are utilizing table aliases, Toad remembers these and will qualify your code correctly.
FIGURE 3.21 SQL Editor after using Insights
Notice earlier in Figure 3.20 that the items appearing in the Insights panel are in alphabetical order. One of the authors prefers the order as they appear in the object. Notice the Options button on the Insights panel. You can also access this area via the Configure Toad Options button on the top toolbar.
Figure 3.22 shows the Toad Insights configuration options. Notice that you can define the objects that this feature works on along the top. The center part of this screen allows you to
- Turn off the feature
- Cache the results (default)
- Display as text
- Sort the list (the author prefers to turn this off)
- Delay the popup (handy for those of us who type slowly...)
FIGURE 3.22 Insights Configuration panel
You can see some other items (discussed in Chapter 6) such as the Enable parameter assistance (sometimes the author turns this off as it can slow down PL/SQL coding), and some other built-in keystroke assistance.