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Which applications should I 'mobilize'?

While chatting with a few people recently about mobilizing Lotus Notes and Domino-based applications, I came to a realization: the gut-check reaction to the question "Which applications should I mobilize?" is often "Everything!".

Those of us who have done any mobile application development can understand that this is both overly optimistic and can be very dangerous is VIP user expectations are not appropriately set and everyone involved given a reality check.

See - as an example - I have one manufacturing customer who wanted me to mobilized their engineering change control workflow application. Sounds simple enough really: Give the user the ability to review the given "change control request" NotesDocument via their Blackberry. The problem that was immediately overlooked was the fact that their validated process required that the reviewer actually review the CAD drawings that were to be attached to each request. Yeah - CAD drawings on a 320x240 display. Good luck with that!

Now I think this goes along with any application development endeavor, but it absolutely holds true when you ponder which applications you should mobilize: make sure you understand the both the functional requirements and the internal policies and other driving forces behind the application under consideration. The last thing you want to do is have a failed mobile application project taint any other projects that would actually really benefit from mobilization.

A few that come into mind (and feel free to add to this list in the comments):

  • Group Address Book
  • Vacation Requests
  • Business Travel Requests
  • Document Libraries/Knowledge Bases

In addition, once the dust settles from a few projects that I have on the burner right now, (including Showtime, which I'll be Twittering updates about as #ProjectShowtime), I plan on updating and mobilizing SOTU - my Remote Console Lotus Notes Client Utility application. Should prove interesting, and I plan on showing you all of the glorious DIY details in the next few weeks.

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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