Richard posted some good answers in a response to yesterday’s post. Carrying on with the categorized view UI…I had a call with Glenn Kohner earlier this evening and we were talking about all this. I mentioned an idea about being able to mouse over a category, grab it, drag it out of the viewport to some other location on the web page and drop it. When dropped, this becomes a mini-view of just the children and descendants of that view category.

The nice thing about that is you can use client-side script to manipulate that category. You want to sort by the 2nd or 3rd column in that mini-view…fine. So, I’m working up some demos for that. As Steve DeVoll pointed out, the drag and drop thing isn’t intuitive for the user (how would they know that capability is there). So if it’s really a useful feature to have a mini-view capability, maybe just allocate a window space for it. Click on a category and the mini-view fills in. Maybe put a minimize button on it. More to come…

As I’ve mentioned before, Dwight Wilbanks and I are presenting on AJAX widgits and a toolkit for Domino developers at Lotusphere. I bring to you now some design questions about building enhanced Domino Views with AJAX. Here’s the idea of the basic view widgit. I request a view, it brings back a scrolling viewport that has the first 10 view entries listed. Above the viewport, it says, “Entries 1-10 of 28 categories”. To the right it has a field for me to enter text and the view will jump to that entry in the view.

As I scroll down, more view entries appear, and if I keep scrolling, I’ll eventually get all the view entries (or categories). If it is a categorized view, and I mouse over the entry, it will tell me how many children there are for that category, and how many total descendants. So here’s question number 1. Rather than “twisty” style view categorization, what if I had a 2 pane view that showed the categories in the left pane, and when I click on the category, the list appeared in the right pane? Here’s an MS DOM reference page that has a similar orientation. It’s so easy to get buried in categories, I could see this type of navigation being handy.

Bruce Elgort, co-host of the Taking Notes podcast, sent me a note this morning about recording a podcast this weekend on AJAX development. Frankly, I’m a bit surprised after the rather “uninspired delivery” that accompanied my 1 minute tip on an earlier podcast. (Don’t try recording at 11pm with kids asleep nearby…it kind of dulls the flow.) Anyway, I’m better live, never know what might come out of my mouth 😉

I haven’t confirmed with Dwight yet, but hopefully he’s available because he has some good reasons why NOT to use AJAX and has a preferred route he calls “dynamic JS”. With Julian joining in, this should make for an interesting discussion! Either way, we’ll definitely talk about the toolkit widgits we’re bringing to Lotusphere for our BP and boot camp sessions. If you’ve got some questions for us (in audio of course!), post them here or at the Taking Notes website.

Well another 2 months have gone by, has it ever been busy. I turned 39 yesterday, thanks to my crew for a nice surprise lunch at one of my favorite places, Cantina Laredo. So what’s new?

First, Dwight Wilbanks and I will be speaking at Lotusphere on AJAX programming with Domino. We’ve been building some nice toolkit widgits that we’ll share with everyone, including a lab session where you can try it out “hands-on”. I plan on a blog entry every day from now till Lotusphere, so there’ll be more coming on that.

Next, we’ll have a pedestal at Lotusphere, #618 in Penumbra Alley. On Tuesday afternoon, bring a Notes/Domino app over on a memory stick and we’ll give it a 30 minute “Domino Facelift” live. More on that in the next few days.

I’m putting together a screencast on the Icodex Integrate!People product. If you haven’t looked at this tool for Notes client management, you’re missing out. We’ve signed up to be Icodex’s US sales and support for Integrate!People (rename coming at Lotusphere), and I’ve never liked a product as much as this one. Get an introduction here. Florian Vogler, CTO of Icodex, and I will be speaking at Lotusphere about it. If anyone would like to join my team as a salesperson, I’ll put you to work on this one right away.

We’ve launched a new business segment, Managed Hosting. It takes advantage of both our development background and best practices experience in running big Notes shops to offer an outsourced model for managing Lotus Notes. We’ve got lots of interested clients, and now, a few customers. More details to come.

Sooner or later, we’ll launch the new website. The big birthday present I wanted was to launch it yesterday…oh well, cobbler’s kids and all that.