Ben Langhinrichs

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March, 2011
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Genii Weblog


Civility in critiquing the ideas of others is no vice. Rudeness in defending your own ideas is no virtue.


Tue 8 Mar 2011, 09:54 AM
What I've Been Doing with XPages
I have been working more steadily with XPages recently, and while it is clear there are some real deficiencies, there are also some real strengths. I am less tempted to give up in disgust that I was with composite applications, but I do feel a strong urge to make XPages better, faster, more efficient and more powerful.

I have already found a couple of ways that I can use or enhance technology in our Midas Rich Text LSX to make developing XPages easier.  To give one example, I am adding a CopyWithDependencies method to the GeniiRTItem class.  As an example of how that is useful, if I wanted to use some of the discussion logic in another database

Call rtitem.ConnectXPage(db.Server, "discussion8.ntf", "allDocuments")
Call rtitem.CopyWithDependencies(db.Server, db.FilePath, "allDocuments""Overwrite=Yes")

With these two lines, you connect to an XPage (in this case, I just connected to the one in the template, but it could be in any database), and then copy the XPage to a new database using the same name.  But this doesn't just copy over the single design element. It copies all the custom controls, style sheets, JS libraries, image resources, etc. that are used with the XPage, so that you don't have to worry about missing any.  After that, you are free to tweak and change to your heart's content.

What You Can Do (And How to Win the Software)
This is just the beginning, but I thought I'd open up a discussion about what is wrong with XPages, but with a major caveat. For the purpose of this contest, I only want to hear about things that I might possibly be able to fix. Don't limit yourselves too much, as I might be able to enhance/fix things that seem unlikely, but I can't change the UI in any significant way and I can't make designer load an XPage more quickly. I can do lots of things with both XPage development and XPage use, and I can do cool things with the CKEditor.

Here's the deal. You tell me something that could be done better, I do it better, and then I give you a license to Midas to do it better. It's that easy. For example, if you comment that XPages would be more useful if only they allowed such and such, and I can figure out how to make Midas allow such and such, I'll add it to Midas and give you a free Base client license (up to fifty user). That's a $1500 value, just for grumbling.

If you suggest a way that CoexEdit could provide more power, and I add it to CoexEdit, I'll give you a discount of 25% off a CoexEdit server. That's also a $1500 value, just for grumbling.

Of course, you have to be first with a suggestion. The rest is up to you. Grumble away. I'm even happy to have you grumble here, in public, where other ISVs can listen in and try to beat me to the punch. Fine by me. If you like, you can send me a suggestion by email to preserve anonymity, or because you might add it if I don't. I won't tell anyone if you don't want me to, although if the capability makes it into one of our products, I will make the feature public and shout it from the rooftops.

Anybody out there have anything you would like to see work even better?

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