Blog Moved to WordPress.com

A 12 year relationship I had with my ISP was ruined two days ago when my ISP stated they would not unlock xmlrcp.php for my WordPress site. After hours of arguing with them and showing patch after patch they never budged. So that is when the real story begins…

Wordpress_logo_8

I decided to move my blog to WordPress.com. No more customizations, or me creating my own themes, etc. I am done with that and now I can rest easy to know I am on a highly scalable platform with amazing support.

I bought the premium package because I wanted my own domain “blog.balfes.net” and have some more options for themes. I might even consider the business plan if I see some cool themes.

What absolutely amazed me was I had two chats going. One chat with my ISP and one chat with WordPress.com support open in two browsers. I really should have kept the scripts because they were complete opposite. The ISP chat was pretty much me calling them names and them spewing canned responses which then I got more upset. All the while the WordPress.com folks were already in the process of moving my site for me. Their support chat was amazing and could quickly answer questions or actually do stuff for you instantly. The problem is once the one question is done or if you don’t have anything else they end the chat. However, each person I chatted with, about 5 different ones, all could immediately dive into the problems and had the complete context. I was totally amazed!

let’s just let the developers run a script on your site to fix all of the paths

I will say we had one hiccup with the move, when I first imported my site the DNS redirect was already running and none of my images got transferred. We resolved that but then the site had broken links everywhere. We had some ideas how to resolve it but the WordPress Support said “no, let’s just let the developers run a script on your site to fix all of the paths.”. I was like “oh ok, go ahead”. They had the site completely fixed within an hour or so. Once again, totally impressed with WordPress.com. I hope this will be a long relationship!

We will miss you Scott…

I just read this over at MBR blog.

I worked with Scott on Notes 6 and Notes 7, it is sad to see someone like Scott pass at such an early age. He put me in my place many times with regards to what users “Samantha” can understand and how software should look. I learned a lot from Scott.

Off to Orlando next week for the Portal Technical conference

I have the luxury of presenting three different presentations next week in Orlando. It looks like it is going to be a fun and busy week for me. Here are the three sessions and below are the times I will be presenting them, if you are going to the conference feel free to stop by or hook up for a beer.

D10 – Developing Offline Applications for WebSphere Portal with Lotus Expeditor ? Technical Deep Dive

N13 – Building Rich Client support for WebSphere Portal with Lotus Expeditor

N05 – Extending Portal based Composite Applications to Lotus Notes

Monday:
4:15-5:30 N05 Extending Portal Based CA's to Lotus Notes
6:00-7:00 BOF – Lotus Expeditor; Desktop, Toolkit and Device

Tuesday
1:00-2:15 N13 Building Rich Client support for Websphere Portal with Lotus expeditor
4:15-5:30 D10 Developing offline applications for WP with Lotus Expeditor
6:00-7:00 BOF – Composite applications in your business

Wednesday
1:00-2:15 N05 Extending Portal Based CA's to Lotus Notes

Portal Managed client teaching videos

If you are interested in using Portal to deploy your composite applications to Expeditor or Notes 8, you might want to watch these two videos that were put together. They give a pretty good in-depth introduction to the technology and concepts:

Portal Managed Client Overview
Using Portal Managed Client

Running the Car Rental Sample in Lotus Notes 8

I wrote about getting this working on the CA blog over here. To get this working, you will need the Lotus Expeditor plugins for the Dirby database support since the sample uses a local Dirby database to store the customer, car, and credit card information. Here are the features that you would need to install:

com.ibm.rcp.database.feature
com.ibm.rcp.database.derby.feature

Here is the same picture from the CA blog but I highlight what parts are SWT, Portlets, and Notes views:

RSS feed for th Expeditor Yahoo pipe I created

Not sure why I did not think of this before but the Yahoo pipe I created a bit back has the ability to have an RSS feed of it. This is a pretty cool concept because I can basically get all “Expeditor” news from this feed in my reader.

Pipe feed.

Breadcrumbs on the bottom?

After playing with the UI of the XPD Dashboard I have found that having the breadcrumbs navigator on the bottom makes a lot more sense, at least it is more aesthetically pleasing then on the top because of my category selection proxy. Really, it would probably look best if I created a hybrid component with both the category selection proxy and breadcrumb within the same view.

Here is a screen shot of the new XPD Dashboard – a lot more room to view the main content – in this case my problem reports.

Since I can select most of what I need from the History button, I can actually use the dashboard without the side teams view – even more space to see the main content. This makes working with the views very easy.

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Composite Applications at Lotusphere!

Wow, there are a ton of topics around composite applications for Lotusphere sessions, bofs, labs, and jump starts. Make sure you communicate what you would like to learn about or see on the CA blog or here.

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Developing for Lotus Notes

I have been developing Lotus Notes applications for almost 14 years (since version 3 of Notes) and given the latest press on Notes development, composite applications, and what Notes 8 can or can not do, I feel inclined to write my own beliefs about the new Notes 8 client.

When I was at Key Bank I felt I could literally do anything in Notes. And I seriously meant that. When you hear the blogosphere Notes development gurus bash composite applications or Expeditor development in Notes 8 by stating “I could do that already” they are most likely not lying. The problem is, they are right, THEY could do it. However, 90% of the rest of the Notes community could not.

Given that, I think we need to take a step back and think why IBM did Notes 8 in the first place. The top reasons were: better UI for PIM, better customization of applications, and a broader programming model. Of course, those are my personal interpretations.

With the introduction of Lotus Expeditor (and ultimately Eclipse) there is a whole new set of capabilities for application developers and end users. From UI, Web Services to an entire open source community (Eclipse), the capabilities have just quadrupled (or even more). Managers will now most likely have new hires coming directly out of college with Eclipse and Java experience. How many people coming out of college know LotusScript or the NSF architecture? I have interviewed dozens (if not more) and unless they did an internship with IBM or a large IBM customer, the answer was NONE.

This also applies to Sametime. You will now have a common programming model and application architecture all based on Lotus Expeditor. Lotus Expeditor and Eclipse developers are the new “system level engineers”.

Composite Applications are more than just a development platform. It is an end user feature. For the first time applications can now be built without writing a line of code. The problem out of the gate is, we have no component catalog filled with neat, cool, and functional components. This is in fact now our biggest challenge. In order for everyone to “see the light” about composite applications we need a robust catalog of components that can be used and wired across applications. To me, this is a challenge to all of the Notes Guru's out there. Create competitive components that will put the Notes and Composite Application programming model well in front of .NET.

I feel between the JSP, Eclipse, Expeditor, Portal, Notes, and Java communities you will see more compelling commercial and open source components to this overall Expeditor architecture. Because remember, Expeditor can surface all of those technologies today in its UI- and so can Notes 8.

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