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Building Composite Applications With Notes Widgets in IBM Lotus Notes 8

Building Composite Applications With Notes Widgets in IBM Lotus Notes 8

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Published by Ashish Daga
Building Composite Applications With Notes Widgets in IBM Lotus Notes 8
Building Composite Applications With Notes Widgets in IBM Lotus Notes 8

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Published by: Ashish Daga on Dec 13, 2008
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09/25/2010

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Building composite applications with Notes widgets in IBM LotusNotes 8.0.1
Level: IntermediateLiu Jun, Software Engineer, IBMHardy Groeger, Certified Senior IT Architect, IBM Corporation25 Nov 2008This article introduces the concept and usage of Notes® My Widgets. Through several examples, it shows you how to create Noteswidgets from different kinds of resources in IBM® Lotus® Notes® 8.0.1. Finally, it depicts the process that you can use to build asample composite application leveraging Notes widgets.Notes My Widgets is a newly introduced user interface (UI) feature in Lotus Notes 8.0.1. It offers Lotus Notes users an easy buteffective way to leverage other existing resources, such as Web sites, Lotus Notes databases, Google gadgets, or feeds. It works asa stand-alone application, together with another new feature called Live Text. Widgets can be triggered using Live Text, accessedwithin the MyWidgets sidebar application, or leveraged as components within composite applications. Like other compositeapplication components, through the composite application editor (CAE), Notes widgets can be easily configured to interact withother composite application components.For detailed information regarding composite applications in Lotus Notes, see thecomposite applications topicon the IBMdeveloperWorks® Lotus Web site.
Prerequisites
This article assumes that you are familiar with composite applications and how to build them using the composite application editorin Lotus Notes. To use the examples on your own computer, you also need to install Lotus Notes 8.0.1, including the CAE.
 
Notes widgets overview
Notes My Widgets is a new feature first introduced in Lotus Notes 8.0.1. Notes widgets are small, specialized applications that enable users to leverage existingservices or resources based on automatically recognized Live Text in their Lotus Notes documents. A widget can be accessed through the sidebar, launching itfrom Live Text or text selection, or adding it to composite applications. In contrast to ordinary Lotus Notes applications, creating a Notes widget does not requirethat you write any code or script. Notes widgets configuration wizards make it easy to create and configure widgets from Lotus Notes view searches ordocuments, Web pages, feeds, or even Google gadgets.Figure 1 is an example of a popular usage of Notes widgets. From a Lotus Notes mail document, a floating window containing Google Map is launched by right-clicking selected text and using the context menu. The input search term is the selection in the Lotus Notes mail document. The floating window here is theNotes widget itself. It looks like a common Web page running directly in a window other than a browser. Actually, the Notes widget shown in figure 1 is createdfrom a Web page (Google Map), and all the content in the window is provided by the Web page (Google Map).Document options
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Figure 1. Notes widget in floating window
To use Notes widgets in Lotus Notes, you can either import created Notes widgets from the Notes widgets catalog server and XML files or create your owncustomized Notes widgets. Lotus Notes 8.0.1 provides tools to perform all the related actions. Figure 2 shows you the widget toolbar and the My Widgetssidebar. The widget toolbar is used to launch the Notes widgets configuration wizards, which can help you create your own customized widgets. The My Widgetssidebar is used to manage all your existing Notes widgets. You can configure the trigger actions and remove Notes widgets in the sidebar.
Figure 2. Notes widgets toolbar and sidebar panel
 
Through administrative policies or local preference settings, you can control whether users see the Widget toolbar and the My Widgets sidebar. Unless restrictedthrough policy settings, users can display them by selecting the option in the Widgets preference settings as figure 3 shows. If you have a Notes widgets catalogserver, you can also import existing Notes widgets there.
Figure 3. Notes widgets preference window

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