Genii Weblog

Busting through "No way!" to get to "Wow!"

Wed 11 Feb 2009, 10:10 PM

by Ben Langhinrichs
While I had fun at Lotusphere showing demos of the iFidelity beta, there was one question I kept getting after the initial enthusiasm: "But does it handle inbound fidelity?"  Now, I have to tell you that handling rich text to MIME (i.e., outbound fidelity) is a difficult mess, but handling MIME to rich text is a horrible, sticky, nasty pile of steaming difficulty, so my gut reaction was to say "No way!"  Obviously, because CoexEdit is a successful product, I have most of the inbound engine already, but most and all are very different.

Unfortunately, the customer is always right, and after more repetitions of "the question" from beta testers, I knuckled down and started to work.  Now, I am glad to report that while it may never be as complete as outbound fidelity, as of Beta 2, iFidelity will be able to handle inbound mail fidelity as well.  To give you an idea of what that means, take a look at Peter von Stöckel's latest test results, iFidelity - Test 4.  The core problem is that while iFidelity may make the mail look better in Gmail, when it gets back to Notes, it doesn't act better.  The person sending a tabbed table isn't going to be thrilled about a reply or forward with a pseudo-tabbed table.  The person sending a section expects a section back.  Even if the other email client can't handle tabbed tables or sections, that is no reason why a reply or forward to a Notes user who has iFidelity should not get the full experience.  For that matter, if a person in Company A uses Notes and a person in Company B uses Notes, and both have iFidelity, there is no reason why the emails shouldn't come through like this too.

Email as created in Notes client, destined for Gmail (using iFidelity outbound rendering)

Email with tabbed table in Notes

Email in Gmail as it is read

Email with pseudo-tabbed table in Gmail

Reply in Gmail, destined to go back to Notes client

Reply from Gmail

Reply received in Notes 8.0.1, without the new iFidelity inbound rendering

Reply received in Notes client without inbound rendering

Reply received in Notes 8.0.1, with the new iFidelity inbound rendering

Reply received in Notes client with inbound rendering

That's right, a completely recreated, working tabbed table.

Copyright © 2009 Genii Software Ltd.

What has been said:

787.1. Colin
(02/12/2009 01:58 AM)


787.2. Gab Davis
(12/02/2009 02:45)

Honestly Ben.. I speechless.. I can't imagine how you are doing that but it's a thing of beauty.

Very very nice.

787.3. Giuseppe Grasso
(02/12/2009 03:08 AM)

wow, that's impressive!!! good work Ben!

787.4. Alan Bell
(12/02/2009 03:10)

err, wow. That is very impressive. I guess it is just as good bouncing off a Thunderbird user, or even those using the main legacy mail client.

787.5. Tim Clark
(12/02/2009 03:22)

WOW nice work

787.6. Ben Poole
(12/02/2009 03:43)

Crikey! Just when I'd thought you'd done all you could with rich text, you amaze again.

787.7. David Leedy
(02/12/2009 04:36 AM)


787.8. Peter von Stöckel
(2009-02-12 05:22)

That is just beautiful, Ben. I can't wait to test Beta 2!

787.9. Jason Hook
(02/12/2009 07:00 AM)

Can I have your children?


787.10. Tim E. Brown
(02/12/2009 07:53 AM)


787.11. Richard Schwartz
(02/12/2009 11:09 AM)

We're not worthy! We're not worthy!

787.12. Rob Novak
(02/12/2009 01:47 PM)

You will never cease to amaze me.

787.13. Lars Berntrop-Bos
(02/13/2009 01:50 PM)

Well shiver me timbers that's just awesome!

Message to Lotus: iFidelity shall be incorporated in 8.5.2