I admit, that is a provocative title, and no, I am not ignoring my NDA to reveal some amazing new feature in Notes 8.5.1. Instead, I am reminding folks that we sometimes get a bit jaded and forget just how much power is in the Notes client, and has been for many, many years. One of the features in CSS3 which I greatly anticipate being implemented in browsers some day is the background-size CSS property. The main use for this is to allow an image to be stretched to fit a box, usually a table cell. In Notes, this is done with the table cell properties box, as shown to the right:
This handy feature has been much talked about on the web, and any number of hacks have been devised to allow browsers to simulate the behavior and use stretchable images. There are proprietary partial solutions in Safari, Konqueror and Opera, but the functionality has not been added at all to either Firefox or Internet Explorer.
So, was this functionality added in Notes 8.5 as part of the exciting new enhancements which keep us just ahead of the browsers? Nope. I have to be honest, I'm not even positive when it was added. I know (because I just checked) that it was there and working in Notes R5, released in 1999, ten years ago, but it could well have been an addition in Notes R4.6 or earlier. When I get a chance, I'll go back and look, but for the moment, I'm just happy remembering how much power is packed into the Notes client environment that we simply take for granted.
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Tags: Lotus Notes