Where are we?

Today I received a question on a post I wrote some time ago. I had to start up my local development environment just to see if I remembered where I placed the code that was asked for.

So where are we? Or what are we doing?

Still Domino. Still XPages. But then mainly in Java. The story about application development with XPages that IBM did NOT tell you. Why? You may tell.

I was thinking about gathering my past experience and ideas and combine it into a ‘product’ but workload and a private life with small kids is preventing me from this.

OpenNTF? Naaa. Too tired.

CU at Engage? Probably not (I am a developer and development sessions are scarce).

CU at GraphConnect? Good chance!

This blog? Yes, probably some new posts soon.

Something in the pipeline? Yes, tomorrow a presentation for colleagues on using Java in XPages development.

For now: time to watch some CL football 🙂


Feeds highlights (video)

I noticed that I had a enormous backlog in my feedreader (feedly) starting from around September (pre IconUK). Allthough the amount of blogposts in the Yellow Bubble is declining (fast) I just did not have the time to keep up with it untill now.

I thought it would be a great idea to consume the feeds in a different matter so the idea came up to take a weekly ‘snapshot’ and mention some of this weeks most interesting posts. The result is a short video which is easy to consume. Probably a demo or two of the highlights would have made things much more clear, but hey I am not Niklas Heidloff nor do I reside in some form of organ of an open source community.

I apologize for the bad quality since I used the internal microphone of my PC and there are constructions taking place in the street I live. At least I am rid off the many unread blog/news items 🙂

I made it to NotesIn9

I remember a phrase in a song from an old punk band:

If you want to have a scene

then you have to create a scene

So after some dark words from David Leedy I created a video about using some tooling to tackle the problem with using Font-Awesome in XPages. These tools (Node, Bower, Grunt) you could also use in other situations. Another use-case could be the AMD loading conflict with Dojo.

So I would like to thank David Leedy for granting me the opportunity to talk technical outside the Yellow Bubble. I also thank Oliver Busse, who did a great job in his first time appearance as host.

My video you can watch via this link.

End of contract – a retrospect

Introduction – I am out of work !

Hi there. Recently I was informed that the company that invited me urgently to move abroad for a professional and challenging work environment was not intending to continue my contract after my trial period.

Reactions I received were ‘how sad’ and ‘probably we are less easy to work with than we intend to be’.

I guess a healthy and professional work-environment depends on the people and handling expectations, all supported by management. I do may say this has been MY WORST WORKING EXPERIENCE EVER, and this should summarize it.

However, the unsuspected decision (there has never been a discussion, so no outcome) has brought me and my family with infants in a small social nightmare. We have made a considerable investment with a transmigration, short-term high-price accommodation etcetera) based on the promises we received.

In an attempt to make this post not the saddest of all ‘I am a IBM ICS developer and looking for a job ‘ (you may reply however in case you know a job opportunity) I was thinking writing about my activities the last x months and my plans for the near future.

Log of activities

Spring Tool Suite

The last months I have been developing my first Java program in Spring Tool Suite (STS). The program runs as a service and basically it collects data from a financial service and create reports (spreadsheets) from the received data. The bit where IBM Notes plays a role is that for logging activities OpenLog is being used. For displaying the log entries I build an interface with the help of XPages.

Why STS? – Because I was told so.

What is your experience? – After programming in XPages with more and more Java (Managed beans, Java classes, External libraries, Expression Language) the learning curve was quiet steep. Luckily I got help with a patient colleague who showed and explained me a lot of ins and outs in developing in STS (Thanks!).  A lot of things that are simply to manage in JSF (e.g beans) I had to setup myself and I have been taking the existance of scope variables for granted. On the other hand the REST templates in STS work like a charm and make it easy to work with REST services.

So this project has been a good learning experience for me, although the working conditions (read: project specifications) were poor.

XPages 2.0 err 1.0

Further I have been working on XPages development by updating an existing XPages application.

When I first looked at the application I saw a load of design elements. Basically each type of document had it own large set of design elements to display information in different views, so with the help of the Dynamic Content control, some Java collections and work more with one JSON configuration file instead of losely coupled keyword documents I managed to reduce the amount of design elements dramatically.

Besides that a search interface had to be added. When I proposed to use the jQuery DataTables plugin for a more dynamic and potential search function instead of a custom form with hard-coding the dropdown boxes I was like talking abracadabra, my blog posts on the datatables plugin prove however this can be implemented fairly quick and easy.

So no chance here to introduce Managed beans, Java classes, JSON as data format for document collections, REST services, use XPages only as render engine, avoid SSJS as much as possible, avoid setting up unnecessary Notes view for delivering (slightly) different sets of data, use expression language above SSJS (when possible). So no chance to prove my skills here. Should I feel sorry for the customer?

Working on a Mac

For some it’s like nature but do you remember the time you came from a Windows environment and started working with a Mac? The last couple of months I have been working with Mac and this was also a great learning experience!

The future

So what will bring the future? From what I understand the Notes market in Sweden has been very low the last couple of years so I might have a problem here. My skills are mainly focussed on XPages development, and the expectations for this platform are very unclear (did I hear a roadmap for IBM Notes / Domino somewhere ?)(please do not post depressing comments about the prospects of this product).

The lack of updates from IBM and the limit amount of companies embracing this technology let consider me to look for alternatives.


I have decided to study some upcoming or rising technologies for web development and one of them I consider React. For a couple of years I have been experimenting with Angular and data residing in IBM Notes. It feels to me that Angular has more rules to follow than React (React is about the view in the MVC concept) so the latter looks more easy to start with.

Knut Herrman gave me a nice introduction on React as front-end for Domino a while ago.

So hopefully I can demonstrate soon my first “React application” to you.

Graph data modelling

The data that we live with becomes more connected so another ‘leg’ I would like to stand on in the near future is on graph data modelling. I have followed several courses for Neo4j now and been exploring the Graph db in the OpenNTF Domino API whichs allows me to build applications in an environment I feel comfortable in.

I have blogged about Graph data-modelling with Notes data in other posts so expect some more posts about this.

One thing I notice the job opportunities in this area seem to be scarce but perhaps I am looking under the wrong categories on the wrong sites.

So hire me!

I am open for all opportunities; a permanent job, a fixed contract, sub contract. Everything working with interesting technology is better than sitting at home. So if you happen to know something of interest do not hesitate to contact me.

For more information on my work experience I direct you initially to my LinkedIn profile.







Born Social available on GitHub

A long, long time ago I wrote about a project to deliver small building blocks to deliver features from the IBM Connections in XPages application. The posting can be found here: https://quintessens.wordpress.com/2015/04/16/born-social-create-a-social-notes-application-from-scratch/ .

Here and then I was asked to share the project or asked about the progress but since I rarely work with the Connections  platform anymore I thought it could be helpful to upload the Born Social project on GitHub so people can make use of it if they like to.

Unfortunately in the meantime I did no hear or read so much about integration between Connections and IBM Domino so I am not sure if this is a (hot) topic anymore. My initial thought with the project was that it would be ‘cool’ to utilize data in Connections in XPages applications.

I also wrote a small document that helps you to get the application up and running and explains how to use the re-usable custom controls.

The project is available here on GitHub.