Your Development & Design Resource
Lotus Notes Domino 8 from Packt Publishing (and Giveaway!)
12/10/2009 12:43 AM by Chris Toohey
My first impressions of this book - which covered chapters 1 thru 3, left me with an impression that this book's target demographic was not the uber-l33t developers or the Mooney-level administrators, but rather this book seemed to be written for the everyday IT professional that uses Lotus products to address their organization's business needs.
Upon completing this book, my opinion hasn't changed...
Before I continue, let's recap Chapters 1 thru 3.
Chapter 1: A Short History of Notes and Domino
This chapter covers - you guessed it - the whole story to date. Starting with the story of three college students (Ray Ozzie, Tim Halvorsen, and Len Kawell) and briefly covering each release of Lotus Notes/Domino until present day which, at the time of the publication of this book, was Lotus Notes Domino 8.
Chapter 2: Overview of New Lotus Notes 8 Client Features
Jumping off to a great start - again for the target demographic - the book covers what eye-catching features and improved functionality an IT pro can expect to deliver to their users by upgrading to Lotus Notes 8.
Topics include the enhanced user interface of the Eclipse-based Lotus Notes Client, to the inline spellchecker, to multi-level undos, to the improvements with Calendaring and Scheduling.
Chapter 3: Lotus Notes 8 and SOA
A great chapter, discussing the push for support of reusable services and extending Lotus Notes via service-oriented architectures through open technology frameworks.
This chapter picks up the pace and really whet my appetite to deep-dive into development and application architecture...
Chapter 4: Productivity Tools
... and we leave the developer wanting and instead are given an overview of the Lotus Symphony product, it's place in the Lotus Notes Client, and how you can control and deploy these tools via Productivity Tools policy settings.
A great chapter, and something that - as a developer - I didn't know about Lotus Notes Domino 8... but I can't help but feel as though the placement of this chapter was off.
Don't get me wrong, it was a great read and I learned things about the subject technology that this book covers... but it felt a little disconnected.
Chapter 5: Lotus Domino 8 Server Features
I learned a lot in this chapter, as it's all about administration here. I read about Domino Domain Monitoring (DDM), Out of Office now running as a Domino Server Task to allow immediate responses, and even On-Disk Structure (ODS) enhancements.
Some of this stuff I knew about already, but as a non-admin I found myself wanting to learn more about the particular topic discussed... which is where I think this book served it's purpose:
I can read more about the Reverse Path Setting for Forwarded Messages after I'm done with the book. The goal of this book (this chapter in particular) is to provide enough information about the features and functionality that you understand what Lotus Notes Domino 8 is capable of, and you can thus pursue more information on those features or functionality that you think will address your company's business needs.
Y'know... if you do admin stuff.
Chapter 6: Deployment Enhancements in Notes/Domino 8
This chapter covers more admin stuff, and I again learned even more about some pretty slick features available in Lotus Notes Domino 8:
- Client provisioning
- Policy enhancements
- Database redirect
This chapter nicely leads up to...
Chapter 7: Upgrading to Notes/Domino 8
This chapter is full of awesome. Use Case Documents, Health Check punchlists, and even Special Feature Upgrade Considerations; this chapter makes this book a must-have for Notes shops that are planning an upgrade or for consultants who want a step-by-step guide on how to prep a production environment for upgrade.
Which leads us to the upgrade, and since they know that there are often situations where you can't upgrade every Domino Server or Lotus Notes Client in your organization, they've got you covered...
Chapter 8: Coexistence between Notes/Domino Releases
This chapter covers how you can run a Lotus Notes 7 Client and a Lotus Notes 8 Client on the same machine or even Domino 7 (or 6.5 or earlier) Servers and Domino 8 Servers in the same environment. It highlights the things you need to know to make a mixed environment work successfully.
Chapter 9: What's New in Notes/Domino 8 Development
You fellow-developers out there still reading? Well, if you are, you're in luck - our time/chapter has finally come.
This chapter covers Composite Application Wires, the Property Broker Editor, Web Services Consumer (you'll note that in my first impressions review I discussed the lack of a deep-dive into Web Services... I should have kept reading!), Design Element enhancements, Formula and LotusScript enhancements, the Lotus Component Designer, Lotus Expeditor, and even throws in the RSS Feed and IBM Blog templates for good measure.
It's all in one chapter, so don't expect deep-dives, but rather several-paragraph introductions and overviews of each topic. Just like with the admin-centric chapters, you're given enough information to know you want to learn more (or run away screaming - either way).
Chapter 10: Integration with Other Lotus/IBM Products
If you're a Notes shop, and you've heard about Lotus Quickr, Lotus Sametime, or Lotus Connections - read this chapter.
It's a solid yet simple overview of each product and how they can connect/integrate with your Lotus Notes/Domino environment.
Appendix: Third-Party Products
In this appendix, we look at several vendor offerings that could extend your Lotus Notes/Domino 8 environment. The information contained in this chapter is provided by the vendors themselves. For more information, consult the respective vendor's website.
PistolStar, IntelliPRINT, IONET, and CMT Inspector get some page-time in this chapter. To be honest, I didn't read the multi-page overviews of the vendor products.
To be fair, an overview of vendor/3rd-party solutions that address functionality gap in Lotus Notes/Domino could be useful to the target demographic for this book... but it didn't do it for me!
I've mentioned target demographic multiple times, as I think you need to understand who this book was written for and judge/review it based on that.
On the back cover of this book, we find the Who this book is written for:
Lotus Notes power users, administrators, and developers working with any version of Lotus Notes/Domino, who want to upgrade to Lotus Notes/Domino 8.
I would recommend this book to the following people:
- Developers that often create applications in Lotus Notes/Domino, and need to understand what's new in the next/current release.
- Systems Administrators then often work with or maintain Lotus Notes/Domino environments, and need to understand what's new in the next/current release.
- Developers who want to understand Administration.
- Administrators who want to understand Development.
- Technical Managers of Developers or Administrators in Notes shops.
I would not recommend this book to the following people:
- If you're speaking at Lotusphere...
- Developers who hate Administration/Administrators.
- Administrators who hate Development/Developers.
- Helpdesk Analysts looking to understand more about Lotus Notes/Domino.
- Lotus Notes Power Users - this is not a user guide...
If you fall into that first category and not into the second, you can purchase Lotus Notes Domino 8: Upgrader's Guide directly from Packt Publishing in Adobe PDF eBook, standard Book, or both formats.
And -- as mentioned -- I am holding a contest where you can win my review copy of Lotus Notes Domino 8: Upgrader's Guide.
To enter, simply leave a comment on this post. with your name, email address (not published, but I'll need to contact you if you win...), and your thoughts on this review.
I will pick a winning comment at random by Friday, December
12th 11th, 2009
From there, I'll contact you for your mailing address and ship the book ASAP!