Ben Langhinrichs

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Genii Weblog

Foolish inconsistency redux

Fri 23 Nov 2007, 09:36 AM



by Ben Langhinrichs

Blog long enough, and sooner or later your old posts will seem fresh and new again.  What a shame the same is not true of turkey.
- Ben Langhinrichs

This is a modified version of a post I made December 1, 2003.  Sadly, it is as relevant now with Notes/Domino 8 as it was when I was discussing Notes/Domino 6.

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ahh, but when is a foolish inconsistency the hobgoblin of disgruntled minds?  That is the question.  

At issue is the long standing, but to my mind foolish, tradition of using different icons for doclinks, viewlinks, dblink and anchor links in the Notes client than on the Domino server.  They have also changed between Notes versions, although the web icons, sadly, have stayed the same for several versions.  It appears that IBM had enough energy to spiff up the Notes doclink for Notes 8, but didn't bother to spiff up the other link symbols.

Anyway, here are the different sets of symbols:


Notes 8 symbols 
Doclink:
Inline GIF image
View link:

DB link:

Anchor link:



Notes 6 symbols 
Doclink:

View link:

DB link:

Anchor link:



ND6-ND8 web icons 
Doclink:

View link:

DB link:

Anchor link:



R5  web icons 
Doclink:

View link:

DB link:

Anchor link:


So, why are these different?  Do the symbols for the web look so much better?  Certainly not the doclink, and what the heck is that ND6-8 db link?  I like the other ND6-8 choices, but if they were chosen, why not change the Notes symbols?  You can't say that it was important not to change, as that would certainly apply to the web as well.  I highly doubt that it would change the code much to replace these, yet the Notes symbols have stayed the same.

I guess we won't know the answer, but for the moment, I am going to have Midas, CoexEdit and OpenSesame  use the Notes standards.  It will make the customer happy, and it will make me feel a bit (foolishly?) consistent.

Coexistence Tip
As for the tip, simply copy the four GIF files in the first table into the /domino/icons directory under your data directory and magically your web documents that use links will look a bit more like your Notes documents.  Seems like a small thing, but real coexistence is partly a matter of lots of little things adding up.

Note: Thanks to Mark Ramos of Granite Software (the spamJam and ZMerge people) who created these GIF files for me.

Copyright 2007 Genii Software Ltd.

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