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Using Computed Text and Pass-Thru HTML to create interactive no-UI View Applications in IBM Lotus Notes Client Applications

I think it was Bruce Lill who mentioned the other day that he uses a Computed Text instance to generate read-only data tables in a Lotus Notes Form via Pass-Thru HTML and Stylesheets... something that I think is absolutely brilliant!

I thought of taking it a step further and making a more interactive example, which I call the Computed Passthru Example, or CPE for short.

Lotus Notes Client CPE 

A pretty simple UI example here, which I've evolved from my Web 2.0 UI in the Lotus Notes Client demo -- which consists of a single frame Frameset, containing a Form Design Element (named UI).

Lotus Notes Client CPE 
New Entry

Rip apart the example/download application for the particular details, but I'm using a simple Hide-When Formula based on - ultimately - an Environment Variable. When I want to show the popup, I simply set the Environment Variable and reload the UI Form Design Element in the Frameset. To close it, I simply clear the Environment Variable and reload again. Pretty simple, really...

But the focus of this Proof of Concept is the Computed Text instance, which uses the following Formula:


The second column of the documents View Design Element?

"<p class=\"entry\"><a target=\"_blank\" href=\"" + field2 + "\">" + field1 + "</a></p>"

This is returned and -- using a Lotus Notes Client Stylesheet -- I return simple yet functional HTML, which replaces an Embedded View in my Lotus Notes Client Application!

Imagine the potential application of this technique when you realize that it can handle Notes:// URLs!

Now, while I wouldn't replace the idea of the UI View in a Lotus Notes Client Application, there's really no reason that you couldn't use this for displaying a subset of information on the screen that's intended for read-only purposes... something like a data grid of Response Documents with click-to-open functionality!

Demo Video

Example Download

Download the Computed Passthru Example 
Lotus Notes Client Application

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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