Ben Langhinrichs

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December, 2017
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Civility in critiquing the ideas of others is no vice. Rudeness in defending your own ideas is no virtue.


Fri 22 Dec 2017, 10:07 AM
There was a Domino 2025 Jam a few hours from here, but I didn't make it, already sucked into the flu I am still battling. (My wife works in a preschool, so avoiding illness is nigh on impossible.) I think there was a virtual Jam, but I didn't join in. It isn't because I don't care. I do. It isn't because I am jaded and snarky and disbelieving either. I think IBM is genuinely trying to solve this peculiar problem of a product that won't die and that still provides so much value even in an age that seems to have moved past it.
 
I didn't go because IBM does not need my vision. 
 
I am a backend person in a frontend world, and while there absolutely need to be backend people making all that frontend stuff possible, Domino 2025 is not going to be about the backend or it will probably fail. I've met with IBM, given my thoughts on API support and extension hooks and stuff like that. They'll either listen or not, but I don't want to take up one second of airspace from the people who can talk about all the fancy new stuff. My stuff will continue to be important, but IBM mostly has to not screw it up, and not hide it too carefully. Maybe they will, and maybe not.
 
[Note: my "backend" and "frontend" terms may be deceptive. I live on a command line and in a text editor. Somebody doing graphical or low code development is "frontend" to me. Not meaning to disrespect or categorize or anything, just differentiate. My products impact the frontend, especially AppsFidelity, but have no user interface of their own.]
 
Given the current efforts and energy, I would now give Notes/Domino a 30% chance of becoming at least somewhat relevant again. That is a huge advance over the 1% chance I would have given it a year ago, I am already seeing customers putting new money into Notes/Domino projects they've let stagnate for years, or consider (gasp) new projects. So, I am a believer, albeit a practical pragmatist as well. I will continue providing migration tools and services, but am also working with more customers on projects meant to stay in Domino (and sometimes Notes).
 
I am a believer, but I won't Jam about it. I hope all of you better suited to the task will take my place.
 
 
 
Inline JPEG image
 

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Tue 19 Dec 2017, 12:21 PM
 
ISO 9000 through cracks in glass
 
If you wonder what the joke in that is, you have not tried rendering documents created over the past twenty years by various companies. While it may be easy to dismiss such design elements as legacy artifacts, your company or your client's company may have them in active use or in archives that must be preserved. Whether due to ISO 9000 or other statutory or regulatory requirements, both data and appearance must be preserved. Even if you wanted to replace the design of every database (trust me, you don't) to replicate the look and feel, you'd have to deal with stored forms and rendered documents which have those layout regions, layers and embedded controls inside the rich text fields. This includes emails as well as application documents, etc.
 
IBM has done an amazing job in the Notes client, supporting every ancient design spasm that came along, but even if you love the Notes client, you may not want to remain locked to it forever. A big part of our effort at Genii Software in the past couple of years has been in rendering the unrenderable. Whether you want those ISO 9000 documents displayed through a web front end or stored in a standards-based vault, you need to be able to get an accurate rendering without changing the stored document at all. That is where Midas and AppsFidelity and CoexLinks come in, all of them sharing crucial pieces of a rendering engine built to handle just about anything. Give us a call at +1 216‒991‒5220 or send us an email at sales@geniisoft.com, and ask how we can help with your thorniest issues, whether you are moving to the cloud, migrating, or just mobile-enabling an app. No risk asking, and you might find a solution which make you a hero, rather than a punch line.

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