Ben Langhinrichs

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What rich client features do YOU want?

Thu 7 Aug 2003, 02:45 PM

by Ben Langhinrichs
I have been very interested in the reactions people have to the new Lotus Workplace initiative.  There is some enthusiasm, some eye rolling, and some confusion.  Of course, the most interesting reaction, mostly because it doesn't come from me, is interest in the new "rich client" that is mentioned both in Jeff Calow's article that I blogged about yesterday, and in the webcast that Ed Brill recommended here in his blog.  I know why I am interested, but I wonder why others are.  It is often the first thing people mention, although that may be because it is still mysterious.

So I thought I should stop waiting, and start asking:  What do you hope the rich client is?  What do you need it to be?  What would you wish for in terms of features?

Do you hope it is a Notes Client Lite?  Do you need iNotes for Collaboration?  Would you wish for programmability with LotusScript?  What is it that everybody is picturing when this mysterious "rich client" is mentioned?  Let's let IBM know now before they spring a feature set on us, and perhaps we'll see some of our dreams come true.

Copyright 2003 Genii Software Ltd.

What has been said:

35.1. Alan Bell
(08/07/2003 03:08 PM)

I guess replication would be #1 for me. Workplace is Portal based, I would want the rich client to be able to take a local replica of anything on the portal and be able to work with the full application logic off line and sync up later. If that works then Workplace is the killer solution among portals.

35.2. Gerco Wolfswinkel
(08/08/2003 07:14 AM)

I guess it will have replication, as IBM already has experience with replication over the web - with DOLS. As for the rich client itself, I haven't given it much thought yet on what it should be. Ben, you got me thinking :-)

35.3. Ben Langhinrichs
(08/08/2003 01:37 PM)

I would agree that replication is key, but does that imply the data store must be compatible with Notes? I guess it will be DB2, and Notes will also allow DB2 storage by that point, but it is not so clear that the two stores will be compatible. I certainly hope so (Midas for DB2, here we come)

35.4. Gerco Wolfswinkel
(08/09/2003 05:22 AM)

In the LSphere aftermath there have been a couple of discussions on the future of storage. While I can't find the exact info right now, this is what I remember: Over time, there will be only one database left: DB2. That database will inherit some (lots?) of the .nsf's capabilities, so that you can 'mix and match' relational or non relational features in one database. Being able to store Domino data in a DB2 backend is just the first step. But I believe this is not yet on the radar for Notes7, but discussed and investigated for a 'post 7' version of Notes.

35.5. Gerco Wolfswinkel
(08/09/2003 05:27 AM)

Ah, I've found it again. Scott Prager wrote some stuff in the partnerforum 2002 about his session INT102 of Lotushpere 03.

35.6. Ben Langhinrichs
(08/09/2003 06:17 AM)

The stuff Scott is working on is awesome. It would be a seamless, under the covers, use of DB2 with performance gains coming from indexes and lookups mostly. (It would be below the API level, so Midas would work as is.) Question really is, would the rich client use THAT store, or a different DB2 storage mechanism. It would make more sense for it to be the same, but sense is not everything.

35.7. Gerco Wolfswinkel
(08/09/2003 12:06 PM)

Well, If they'd use the same store, it's probable that information in there could be accessed from all sorts of clients. It could be served by Domino over Notes or HTTP and by Websphere Portal. And it could be accessed by a traditional Notes client, the new rich client, or from a browser like today, or from a PDA..and replicated, too. Maybe even replication from Notes client to Domino to Webphere Portal, who knows. Sounds good to me!