Usability - Productivity - Business - The web - Singapore & Twins

xPages Overview

xPages Overview
Letting the xPages workshop sink in for a few days, I'm now preparing to spread the love. If you happen to be in Beijing in October 15-17 2008 you could join me for the first AP xPages workshop. It will be designed as a T3 (which stands for Train-The-Trainer), so you will not only learn what xPages is all about, but also how to spread the love. I think xPages will not only be a major overhaul how existing Notes shops develop web applications, but it also offers the unique opportunity for new developers to get started on an attractive platform. What makes xPages so special?
  • You only need to learn one scripting language. Both client and server run on JavaScript
  • You can move code from client to server to client easily. It is after all the same language
  • You have the comfort of a fast turn-around (like all scripting based web pages) combined with access to all things Java
  • The database is right baked in. So no tedious xDBC configuration or scaffolding or ORM mapping. Submitted forms become documents
  • Domino's security right baked in. You just declare the fields that control access and you are done (Author and Reader fields for the non-Notes readers here)
  • Ajax everywhere: You can just specify that any action should refresh only a given set of elements and xPages will take care of the Ajax calls
Once you get into xPages the list will get longer. So stay tuned.

Posted by on 02 September 2008 | Comments (3) | categories: Show-N-Tell Thursday


  1. posted by Nigel on Tuesday 02 September 2008 AD:
    I do hope that you "spread the love" cause from where I stand, web development in Notes/Domino is pretty wierd. It's too different from other web platforms that it's difficult for Domino to be a main force in the web space.

    Perhaps you could write a Head First book? Emoticon wink.gif
  2. posted by Wayne on Wednesday 03 September 2008 AD:
    I have to agree with Theo. The last two big forward moves in development have skirted past the Notes Client Interface. Composite Apps is about including/surfacing other applications and XPages is about the web.
    There are only a few *new* features I would like to see.
    1. A list box control that can handle multiple columns and not have to be attached to a view. Using an embedded view requires extra views (consumptive of index time) or folders (can't be shared among users). The current list box really needs to be updated.
    2. Better keyboard control - still can't use function keys, plus you should be able to set type-ahead for any text field - source the lookup list from a view, or a multi-value field on a document. Also, "onchange" should fire for each keystroke in a text field - or make the javascript events work in the client.
    3. Native display of SVG.

    If (when) xpages comes to the client, I hope it's not a rehash of the current features - what's the point of learning new features when they exhibit the same limitations as the old features?
    That being said, XPages does look like it will remove some of the tedium involved with web development.

  3. posted by Theo Heselmans on Wednesday 03 September 2008 AD:
    Stephan, even though I haven't had a chance to 'play' with xPages yet, I understand its opportunities.
    But since I do a lot of 'native' Notes development (and only 20% web/domino), I can't use xPages for most of my development ! I really, really wish that xPages can be used as NotesPages too. Well, maybe in 9.0 Emoticon wink.gif