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CMS: do I ask for a PRE/POST Body for each renderkit?

One of the projects that I'm working on requires the creation of a Lotus Notes Domino-based content management system. With this Lotus Notes Domino CMS, I plan on not only running the two project websites in question but also this site ( All sites require some basic content management with a mind to incremental updates once the website "design" is finalized.

It's with that in mind that I'm using (what I'm referring to as) renderkits for the markup blocks within the application.

There are 2 main types of actual content NotesDocuments in my CMS at this time: documents and events.

Each of these NotesDocument types contain actual data, while the other types of NotesDocuments simply tell the CMS what to do with the data.

content NotesDocuments are used to create static blocks of content - such as the inclusion of Google Friend Connect or the Blog Widget, which will be unique-keyed and can be used throughout the website.

The renderkits allow you to define a unique key, selection criteria, formula template, and count attributes - all of which will be used to create evaluated subsets of documents and events content markup.

RenderKit Form UI

An Agent runs against all active renderkits, using the search criteria to grab a NotesDocumentCollection against the CMS, and - using the Formula as a "template", does a simple Mail Merge-like meld of the NotesDocumentCollection content into the desired format... which is then saved en masse into the Body NotesItem for that given renderkit.

Pretty standard stuff as far as a CMS goes... but I had a simple question: should I allow for the definition of pre and post Body NotesItems in the renderkit; allowing the prefix and suffixing of content in the Body NotesItem?

My knee-jerk reaction was sure, why not!... but the more and more I think about it I'm not too sure.

See, for the intended usage scenarios, I will be using a Page NotesDocument to marry the content and the renderkit into the intended delivered content. I can define prefix and suffix information in the page as needed without worry.

Of course I imagine that there's no harm in adding it really... but that's where I turn to you:

And feel free to give your thoughts beyond the poll in the comments of this post (and thanks!).

About the author: Chris Toohey

Thought Leadership, Web & Mobile Application Development, Solutions Integration, Technical Writing & Mentoring

A published developer and webmaster of, Chris Toohey specializes in platform application development, solutions integration, and evangelism of platform capabilities and best practices.

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