A Legacy Notes Developer's journey into madness.

Episode IV - A New Hope

Devin Olson  August 9 2012 01:01:21 PM
I am finally getting to work with XPages.   Yes, I know XPage technology has been gold for several years now, but I've been a bit busy making a living, so cut me a little slack, OK?

I suppose a little bit of background is in order.  

My name is Devin S. Olson, and I am a Notes Developer.  

I have  been developing Notes applications since 1996 (R3).  That's 16 YEARS of experience folks.   Some people have called me an "expert"; I prefer to think of myself as "well-seasoned".   I have long since lost count of the number of applications I've written or contributed to.  Specific to Notes / Domino, I have worked as a consultant and an in house developer, as an instructor, as a courseware designer, an administrator, and a project manager (not necessarily in that order).  I've been around the block a few times, and pretty much "know my shit" when it comes to Notes / Domino.   I'm not trying to brag, I'm just laying the groundwork so you understand where I'm coming from.

XPages came out a few years ago.  At the time they were pre-release testing I was working for a pretty well known IBM Business Partner, and was able to work with XPages for about 6 weeks or so.   Needless to say I was very impressed.  

Upon initial exposure to XPages, my first instinct was that IBM had finally released something like Microsoft's Active Server Pages technology -only better.  (Please, don't bother with the "JSF vs. ASP  Timeline" comparisons -they aren't pertinent here and besides, I had experience with ASP at the time and had never even heard of JSF).  

Anyway, projects and business needs changed shortly after that and I found myself back doing "Legacy" development.  My focus and energies were entirely devoted to the work I was doing and XPages went gold and continued to evolve without me.   Which means I lost my edge.  Any advantages I had picked up from working with the beta code have long since been displaced by the new stuff.

I am now working for an IBM Customer as a Collaborative Solutions Developer, and most of the development I'm going to be doing is XPages.  Which means I need to  learn XPages.  The only thing my years of experience with Notes / Domino give me is a deep understanding of how the nsf DATA, SECURITY, and REPLICATION models work.  (Well that and a good work ethic.)   As far as JSF and the XPages implementation of them goes I am a complete n00b.    

I'm going to use this site / blog to document stuff I learn or think of or decide to write about along the way.  It does not replace my normal blog (http://www.devinolson.net)  It is instead a place to focus on Learning XPages (hence the title).

I'm starting out by using the default Domino Blog template.  I will eventually convert this to a site driven entirely by XPages, but for now I'm more focused on getting my thoughts written down.  

I will try an post something every work day (even if it is just a tiny blurb or nugget or whatever).  It probably won't happen, but I will try.


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