GoogleIt Mail IT Print IT PermaLinkID103 Mail, Calendar And Contacts -- Non-Summary Data In Views?
11:25:42 AM

This is something that actually caught my attention during the opening general session, but after drinking from that firehose a while longer it slipped off my radar screen. It came back, though while sitting through ID103. Notes 8 can display body text of messages at the view level when showing mail "conversations" (a.k.a. threads). This must mean one of four things:

1. Non-summary data is accessible in view column formulas. I doubt this. I really doubt it. I doubt it because if it were true, it would have been highlit, big-time, rather than just hinted at via a brief mention of a mail feature.

2. New messages received in Domino 8 contain a new item containing the abstract as plain text summary data, so only the body text of new messages received by Domino 8 will show in the client.

3. Same as 2, but there will be an agent that can be run to save the abstracts so that old message bodies can be displayed. Or, we can easily write this agent ourselves if we really want it.

4. Something funky is going on at the Eclipse level, so we're not really looking at view data when we see the body text. Code running in the Eclipse framework is going into the documents to read the rich text, and is overlaying it on the view display. It will be pretty cool if tricks likes are possible, but I doubt it. Not as much as I doubt #1, but I do doubt it. I doubt it because we've been told that everything in the mail functionality is template-driven, and I've heard nothing of the ability to put Eclipse-level coding into Domino templates.

So, which is it? Will have to look into it.

As to the main content of ID103, the filter bar is something I hadn't heard of before. This is something that we've been asking for. In fact, I posted a mock-up of something like it to the IBM partner forum sometime last year. This bar appears at the top of the view and indicates that Show Unread Only (or another filter) is in effect. The fact that type-ahead improvements are based on something called the "DPAB" (for "dynamic personal address book", I think) was also news to me -- and pretty cool. Finally, the fact that real replication of contacts replaces the manual synch process for DWA users was another revelation for me. All very nice.

As for the presentation itself, unfortunately it isn't one of the best. Let's just say that the pacing wasn't right, and leave it at that.

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Comments :v

1. Dave Delay01/23/2007 02:24:45 PM

The Notes 8 memo form adds an item called $Abstract to the note. This contains the first paragraph of the body and, of course, is itself a summary item. I think the Domino 8 server will also add $Abstract for incoming MIME messages, but there's always the chance $Abstract will not be on the note. So the view column displays the $Abstract item if it's available. If not, it displays the subject.

2. Richard Schwartz01/24/2007 07:00:58 AM

Thanks, Dave. That's more or less what I figured it had to be. I suppose it would be possible, then, to write code to add the $Abstract item to old mail, or to messages sent with older clients and/or older templates -- if you want.

3. Nathan T. Freeman01/24/2007 10:51:58 AM

Rich, Expeditor Comp Apps can surface RTLite fields in views. They're doing it for images.

I don't know yet whether that works in the native client.

And yes, that's big big BIG news. But there's a lot of that this week, y'know.

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