Types of Applications

Four general application types exist:

  • Workflow ” Applications in this category include requisitions, document approval, and so on. Most often, these applications rely heavily on messaging and agents to automate actions associated with the business processes that they support.
  • Discussion ” These applications are often the first introduced in a new Notes deployment. They are easy to use, and the Discussion template that comes with Notes is very well designed. These databases are similar to online forums. In effect, they are virtual meetings at which not all participants need be present at the same time.
  • Tracking ” As is evident from the name , these applications keep track of items. These items can be schedules, data items of interest to the enterprise, surveys, and so on.
  • Reference ” A reference application contains items that are typically not changed often; the Help database in Notes is an example of this type of application, and a company policy database is another. Database libraries of either books or other databases is another example.

In practice, applications often are a blend of the different types. For example, in a discussion database, to keep the participants aware of changes and to encourage active participation, you can include a newsletter agent that sends an email containing document links to all the new and changed documents in the database. A reference application for a corporate policy database would almost certainly have an approval process connected with it. A workflow application that handled requisitions might include a discussion component to provide a forum for appeal of a denied requisition . These are merely a few examples illustrating the rich applications that can be created when the different types are blended into a solution.

Notes can also provide integration with a relational database system. Through one of the data-integration tools such as Lotus Enterprise Integrator (LEI), Domino Enterprise Connectivity Services (DECS), Domino Connection Resources (DCRs), or IBM's MQSeries, Notes users not only read data in other databases, but also enter and modify it. Some integrators, such as MQSeries and LEI, can provide a two-way exchange of information; others provide batch updates. DECS and DCRs are covered in Chapter 22, "Accessing Data with DECS and DCRs."

Despite all this impressive power, Notes and Domino simply aren't suited for some types of applications. Applications that have high-transaction volume, such as a telephone call center that takes hundreds of calls an hour , might not be a good candidate for Notes. Likewise, if you need complete accuracy and real-time updates of stock in a warehouse, Notes probably shouldn't be your first choice, although it is conceivable that you could interface with a back-end database such as Oracle to provide accurate up-to-the-minute information. Writing an accounting application in Notes is not something you should try, although you could consider interfacing with one. As a general rule of thumb, if the application's data model more closely matches a relational model, use a relational database and not Notes and Domino. In each of these examples, you could possibly find ways to design around the limitations of Notes; however, it is best to find an appropriate tool to solve the business problem rather than force the tool to fit the problem. Here are some rules of thumb you can use to weed out unlikely candidates. Remember not to take these literally, and use a good dosage of common sense. In general, avoid applications that do the following:

  • Require real-time updates and access to data (except where a back-end data source stores the data)
  • Have high transaction volumes
  • Need sophisticated reporting or a high level of statistical analysis

Part I. Introduction to Release 6

Whats New in Release 6?

The Release 6 Object Store

The Integrated Development Environment

Part II. Foundations of Application Design

Forms Design

Advanced Form Design

Designing Views

Using Shared Resources in Domino Applications

Using the Page Designer

Creating Outlines

Adding Framesets to Domino Applications

Automating Your Application with Agents

Part III. Programming Domino Applications

Using the Formula Language

Real-World Examples Using the Formula Language

Writing LotusScript for Domino Applications

Real-World LotusScript Examples

Writing JavaScript for Domino Applications

Real-World JavaScript Examples

Writing Java for Domino Applications

Real-World Java Examples

Enhancing Domino Applications for the Web

Part IV. Advanced Design Topics

Accessing Data with XML

Accessing Data with DECS and DCRs

Security and Domino Applications

Creating Workflow Applications

Analyzing Domino Applications

Part V. Appendices

Appendix A. HTML Reference

Appendix B. Domino URL Reference

Lotus Notes and Domino 6 Development
Lotus Notes and Domino 6 Development (2nd Edition)
ISBN: 0672325020
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2005
Pages: 288

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