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Consumer Apps for IBM Lotus Notes Domino Revisited

Announcing HD applications! The $5 Apps that I've been selling for over a year now have been doing really well. Relatively speaking, of course, as since they're only $5/app via Paypal (and with Paypal taking on average $0.35 per purchase) I consider it a success if both 1) it's addressing a need and 2) it's paying for my XBox 360 and Netflix addictions while leaving enough left over each month to cover the occasional iTunes purchase... But coming up on the 1 year anniversary of the release of Controller (my first $5 app), I wanted to initiate the next phase of my plan...

That next phase, as I discussed in my What I learned from selling $5 apps... Editorial, is to refine the structure of the consumer IBM Lotus Notes apps, and ultimately make them more powerful, more flexible, and more up-to-date with the current capabilities of the platform.

The structure I'm referring to is a mirror of the current iTunes, Amazon, and Google Marketplace structures for their consumer applications... with an IBM Lotus Notes and Domino twist:

  • Lite

    Applications released as Lite applications will either be demo-level functionality applications (ie., a small subset of the functionality of the application).

    These applications will be available directly on, and published (where appropriate) to and the IBM Lotus and WebSphere Portal Business Solutions Catalog.

  • Standard

    Applications released as Standard applications will be fully-functional apps, delivering features and function demonstrated in the Lite version.

    Standard applications will be written with either traditional or XPages designs where appropriate.

    These applications will be available directly on, and published to the IBM Lotus and WebSphere Portal Business Solutions Catalog.

  • HD

    Applications released as HD applications will be fully-functional apps delivering not only all features and function of their Standard counterparts, but will include additional features and functionality new to the application.

    HD applications will be written in XPages.

    In addition to the application, each HD purchase will include a build recipe e-book that will walk an application developer through the construction of the app.

    (Specific build recipe e-books will be made available for separate purchase following the release of the correlating HD version of the application.)

    These applications will be available directly on, and published to the IBM Lotus and WebSphere Portal Business Solutions Catalog.

... at least, that's the idea.

I kinda screwed up with the naming/branding of my applications on the first go -- specifically Junction Lite, which is actually a Standard app, so I'll have to figure out how I can re-brand it without causing too much confusion.

And now onto my first HD application...

Remote Console and Remote 
Console HD Taking Remote Console HD makes absolute sense to me.

And the desire to take this application HD is a completely organic one: I have not only been asked by customers for features in the Remote Console application that are somewhat out of scope in the current version, but I also have a list of functionality that goes far beyond the original intent of the application.

A few things Remote Console HD will give you the ability to do:

  • enter console commands in a prompt and select pre-defined commands.

  • gather real-time Domino server analytics.

  • manage scheduled agents.

  • manage settings for individual NSFs and NTFs.

  • remotely process AdminP requests.

  • manage Domino Directory groups.

... and those are just a few things that I plan to include in Remote Console HD.

As for a use case, imagine the following scenario:

You're on a train commuting into the office when you receive a VIP request via email to your iPad/Tablet/iPhone/BlackBerry/mobile device of choice for access to an individual NotesDatabase application. You can...

  1. Put away your iPad/Tablet/iPhone/BlackBerry/mobile device of choice
  2. pull out your laptop
  3. startup or restore Windows
  4. connect into the corporate VPN
  5. launch the IBM Lotus Notes Domino Administrator client
  6. update the ACL Group in the Domino Directory
  7. drop the user from the Domino server via a console command
  8. launch Lotus Notes to respond to the request, confirming that it's been completed.

- or -

  1. Launch Remote Console HD from your iPad/Tablet/iPhone/BlackBerry/mobile device of choice
  2. update the ACL Group directly in the Domino Directory
  3. drop the user from the Domino server via a direct console command
  4. respond to the request directly from your device's inbox -- where you first read the request -- confirming that it's been completed.

That's the idea anyhow.

As for the price difference between the versions of each app... that will greatly depend on the application. I'm toying with the idea of making Remote Console HD a $25 USD app (which will include the app, the source/design, and the build recipe e-book) where the Standard version will remain $5 USD.

Thoughts? Once I release Remote Console HD, I will either be making an HD version of Mailer (with complete compaign management, scheduling of mass mailings, etc.) or working on a new application that I've had on-deck for a while now...

For those interested, stay tuned!

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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