Wednesday, August 30, 2006


A while back ago I wrote a little agent that transforms the DXL of a ?ReadViewEntries view. It’s been sitting on the shelf for a while, but I have dusted it off, in order to update my Domino OPML file.
has done a great job of creating a simple resource that allows bloggers to ‘register’ their site. However, for some months now, it’s said that an OPML would be coming soon. Sometimes you have to take matters into your own hands. So, I’ve written an agent that does a transform of this view.


Advisor Summit - SIL317

For those who attended my session 'Use Eclipse with Lotus Domino', thanks for the interest and feedback.
Slides are here.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Lotus Advisor Summit in Phoenix, AZ

It's hot, but I'm having a good time. It's always great to catch up and learn about how people are (or want to be) using Lotus products.
Aside from covering Workplace Forms in the lab, I am presenting two sessions:

FYI, John Head, picked some good stuff coming out of Lotus at Monday's keynote. And of course, Volker was quick with his thoughts.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Lotusphere 2007 - Call for Abstracts

Holy crap! The deadline for abstracts is September 15th!

This week I saw a lot of mention on the price tag for this coming Lotusphere. True that it is a steep price, but it is one that I don't plan to pay. As a Lotusphere presenter the conference price is $0.00. Where are you going to find a better deal?

Now this is a huge dose of 'Do as I say, not as I do', but don't put it off! Get your abstracts together and get them in. I have it on good authority that there will be no exceptions past the deadline.

Also, I wanted to point out that Bob's Jumpstart direction sounds great. I can't imagine a better way to start off a great week of learning and catching-up.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

DXL – What is it good for?

Back in September of 20’04, Bruce asked the question, Do you DXL?. Around that same time, Ian Sherwood and I posted DXLPeek to OpenNTF. With that Ben Poole picked up on "The DXL Buzz". It was a good sirring of the pot, but it seemed to simmer shortly after.

That was until last year, when Dick Annicchiarico, stoked the flames by taking an informal survey on asking "What XML/DXL features would you like to see post-7.0?". I thought this was great! Dick, was reaching out to the community to see how DXL is being used and what Lotus customers are looking for in Domino's XML capabilities. The call was answered by about a dozen people (including myself) in a rather long thread, asking mostly for additional URL commands.

The fact that Domino can represent and work with elements as XML amazes me. Ajax has opened the eyes of many web developers to the power of DXL through the ?ReadViewEntries URL command. However, there is more that can be done as Rocky showed off in January.

DXL has been around for a while and continues to grow. Dick and the Lotus Development team are constantly adding more elements and attributes and getting closer to having a Notes database fully represented as XML. This means that sometime in the near future developers will be able to work confidently with DXL elements both outside and within a Notes/Domino system (some are even doing it today). In a time of Open Document Formats and Service-Oriented Architectures , this says a lot about IBM Lotus and how they plan to continue to cultivate a venerable and valued product in today's market space.

Knowing this, I feel good about being a Domino-diehard. I work with software that has stood the test of time and continues to grow. However I can't rest on that foundation. The platform has to be pushed to ensure its (and my) continued success. Ideas on how to expand the abilities of the product need to be explored. Ajax and Web 2.0 ways of thinking have done this, but that cannot be it.

So in the spirit of a yearly discussion, I ask - What is DXL good for?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The Nifty 50

I've been following this multi-blog conversation for the past few days and am a bit torn on it. While, I think there is value in putting together some out of the box "this is what Notes can do" applications. I think it is a colossal undertaking that if not organized properly would putter out and do more damage than good.

Anyway, while killing some time, I quite accidentally came across this quote from Ray Ozzie in an interview by Paul McNamara for NetworkWorld on December of 2004 for the 15th anniversary of Notes.

Are there milestones through the early years of Notes that you thought particularly important to the development path?

The first big milestone -- and this is not specific to Notes but rather any major commercial end-user software product -- version 3.0 tends to be the first version that hits its mark because it's got a certain level of maturity, a certain level of user feedback plowed back into the product.

The next major milestone -- and this is not widely written about but I think customers understand it -- is there was a thing called "The Nifty 50." It was a set of application templates that were starter apps, so to speak, that were built on top of Notes 3. It bridged a lot of people into understanding and they just started to build more things.

Take that and apply it to today's challenges facing Lotus Notes and Domino. Do we need to have an offering like the Nifty Fifty to help our customers understand where these products fit into today's collaborative-scape?

Answering just that question and ignoring the bullshit and politics, my answer is yes.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


With Ajax becoming a must have for web applications, many Domino developers have come to see the importance and worth of Domino's XML capabilities.
The ReadViewEntries URL command was added to the code stream in the 5.0.2 release of Notes and Domino. It allows a view to be represented purely as XML.

The Domino Designer help document, URL commands for opening servers, databases, and views, is full of great info on the various URL commands for Domino elements. However, I wanted to have this be a resource for just the ReadViewEntries command. Below I will give examples of its use and limitations.
Please note: I wrote this from my own experiences. This is in no way is to be considered an IBM information source.

URL command for reading views as XML - ?ReadViewEntries

The following applies to all databases under the notes/data directory on a Domino server. Hidden design elements are hidden from the server too; you can’t use Domino URL commands to access documents in hidden views. Domino's security model applies. If a user is allowed to see a document, then it will be listed as an entry. Keep this in mind when designing all Domino databases. Hiding documents is not security. Utilize ACLs, Element access, and document level security. Don't rely on $ViewTemplates, they do not apply to views being requested as XML via ReadViewEnries.

In many ways the ReadViewEntries command works the same as the OpenView command. ReadViewEntries can be applied to view and folder elements with additional parameters that allow for control of the data set. In the example below, simply replace 'ReadViewEntries' with 'OpenView" in the URL, to get a better look at the request. That being said, searching a view and having the results returned as XML is not available at this time. The Query parameter will be ignored when used in conjunction with ReadViewEntries.

The results from the ReadViewEntries command is well formed XML. The schema for this and all Domino elements can be found in the notes\xmlschemas directory of any Domino or Notes install.

Caution: If the database property "Do Not Allow URL Open" is set, URL commands are disabled.

Basic Structure

Return Results

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!-- Lotus-Domino (Release 7.0.1 HF229 - June 09, 2006 on Windows NT/Intel) -->
<viewentries toplevelentries="22">
<viewentry position="1" unid="248DA8555A7B76DD852571BE004381F6" noteid="111646" siblings="22">
<entrydata columnnumber="0" name="$1">
<text>The Power of Flight</text>
<viewentry position="2" unid="BE431990CDFBCFA5852571BE004331B8" noteid="111642" siblings="22">
<entrydata columnnumber="0" name="$1">
<text>X-Ray Vision</text>
<viewentry position="3" unid="BD5D4670EA8B1984852571BE004308D4" noteid="111636" siblings="22">
<entrydata columnnumber="0" name="$1">

Syntax and Examples




(note: a default view must exist in the database)

Optional arguments for ReadViewEntries

Append optional arguments to refine the URL. Combine any of the following arguments for the desired result except where otherwise noted.


Where n is the row number to display in collapsed format in a hierarchical view. Do not combine this argument with the ExpandView or CollapseView arguments. This works best on views that do not have the "Collapse all when database is first opened." property selected.


Displays the view in collapsed format. This works best on views that do not have the "Collapse all when database is first opened." property selected.


Where n is the number of rows to display. This is a request and is ultimately controlled by the "Maximum lines per view page" setting on the Domino Web Engine tab in the Server's Document. A value of -1 will request the maximum amount.


Where n is the row number to display in expanded format in a hierarchical view. Do not combine this argument with the ExpandView or CollapseView arguments.


Displays the view in expanded format.


Specifies the type of StartKey. The default when no argument is specified is text. Setting the KeyType to time allows you to use a time value as the value for StartKey which dictates from what row to display the view and the value for UntilKey, which specifies where to stop display of the view. If &KeyType=time is specified, then &StartKey and &UntilKey may be ISO date time values. For example, you might use the time value 20020101T140000,00Z to represent 9:00AM Eastern standard Time in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) or Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), or you might use the time value 20020101T090000,00-05 to represent the same date and time in local time plus offset.,00Z&KeyType=time


Causes all data types to be converted to text on the server. Text lists, numbers, dates and lists of numbers are converted to text before being sent. The server's locale is used for all formatting. Without this argument, the XML output stream contains information in structured, locale-neutral formats.

ResortAscending=column number

Where column number is the 0-based number of the column in the view you wish to resort in ascending or descending alphanumeric order. The column to be sorted must be set up as sortable in the view design. If not no action is taken.

ResortDecending=column number

Where column number is the 0-based number of the column in the view you wish to resort in ascending or descending alphanumeric order. The colue to be sorted must be set up as sortable in the view design. If not no action is taken.


Where category is the category to be displayed in the view. Sets the category for the "Show Single Category" object. Results will not include the Category, just its entries.


Where n is the row number to start with when displaying the view. The row number in a hierarchical view can include subindexes (for example, Start=3.5.1 means the view will start at the third main topic, subtopic 5, document 1).


Where string is a key to a document in sorted view. The view displays at that document. In cases where there is no match for the StartKey, the next available entry is used as the starting point.


UntilKey is only valid when used with StartKey. It allows you to display the range of view entries beginning with the document specified by StartKey until the document specified by UntilKey. For example, &StartKey=A&UntilKey=B would give you all the entries that start with A. Use the &Count keyword to further limit the number of entries returned within any given range.