Write once, run anywhere?

by Volker Weber

You are cool. You are in line with your vendor's strategy. Your partner is IBM, you write all your stuff in Java. You write once and it runs anywhere. Right?

Manfred did. And I was going to try his spanking new Notes application which looks rather cool. There was just this one little pesky error message:


Piece of cake, I thought. I must have missed installing something. Get out the CD and launch the installer. Watch it kill all other programs. Select the advanced install path. So I can make sure I have everything. Should be easy. Right?


It turns out there is a bigger problem:


Lotus does not support Java. It's not that there is no OLE or ActiveX on this platform. They don't support Java. Write once, run anywhere? Not for Lotus.


Don’t get me started... however in fairness, Notes 6.x is also designed to work in OS 9... which doesn't have Java 2. At all.

Ben Poole, 2004-02-09

Well, I have not used Notes a lot since December 2002. And I can't say I am missing it. Mail.app has everything Notes does not have. Integrated with everything else on my system, including instant messaging with the people I need to connect to.

Manfred wants my opinion on the application that he wrote, so I will give the Domino server one chance to run the agents. Exactly one.

Volker Weber, 2004-02-09

I hate this comparison (Notes vs. Outlook, Notes vs. Mail.app, Eudora, etc.). Notes is not an email client. If it were, I'd never use it.
Does Mail.app reliably sync document databases? Support applications built on the document storage? It doesn't, and the large set of features that are pretty unique to Notes/Domino are what keep me tied to it.

Stefan Tilkov, 2004-02-10

Like Java agents, right?

Volker Weber, 2004-02-10

Seriously though: 90% of my Notes usage is/was mail. It can do more, and for that I still use it.

Domino is a nice server and I continue to benefit from it. But the Notes client on the Mac does not cut anything for me.

Volker Weber, 2004-02-10

The ability of the Notes client as a mail tool is not the question here. It is one of platform parity, or otherwise - as was the
post yesterday regarding the future of the Mac client.

My view is that the Mac Notes client has always been just functional enough to tick a box on an evaluation form.

Justin Knol, 2004-02-10

Now, that could be done in a browser.

Volker Weber, 2004-02-10

To be honest. Notes was for long time beeing marketed as a messaging system, competing to ms outlook.

Thorsten Ebers, 2004-02-10

Browser? Are we back at Workplace vs Safari?

Justin Knol, 2004-02-10

Not necessarily. We were mixing up things.

** Notes as mail client

Hardly any incentive to use it on a Mac. Other programs play nicer, faster, cheaper and with less hw requirements.

** Notes as an application platform

Your words: "just functional enough to tick a box on an evaluation form". I say, that could be done in a browser. If it wants to be a serious application platform it has to run all Notes applications. As it does not, it sucks.

No Designer, no Admin, ok, I understand that if Lotus thinks it is only the executives who use the Mac client. But that it does not run an application ... that is asking a bit too much.

Volker Weber, 2004-02-10


I don't think we disagree. I think Lotus does the minimum they think they need to to be able to market the fact that they provide a Mac client. I (and I presume you also)have a different view on what the acceptable minimum is (ie sametime, java etc).

To me, this is not that different to the marketing spin last year
when Lotus trumpeted Domino Web Access for linux as a "rich collaboration client" (http://www-306.ibm.com/software/swnews/swnews.nsf/n/jmae5pvq94?OpenDocument&Site=lotus ) when only really providing mail and calendar support.

In the future, I don't expect the the Workplace Rich Client will be 100% functionally identical on win, linux and mac. I'd like to be proved wrong, but don't have much hope.

Justin Knol, 2004-02-10

You guys shoul dhave been at the Mac BOF this year, lots of the usual griping and half-hearted support from Lotus types. They almost committed to developing the Workplace rich client for the Mac platform (which they were a little more emphatic about in the Ask the Developers session), but there seems to be little or no chance of any SameTime functionality, iNotes support, or working Java in the near future. Honestly, the attitude from Lotus/IBM is, as it always has been, "be thankful you have anything at all". I'm at least a little hopeful that so many of the Notes blog cognoscenti (so to speak ;-) ) seem to be switching to the Mac platform. Hell, I even saw Turtle taking notes on his iBook at the Ask The Developers session. And more questions about support for Mac than support for Linux this year. I guess that counts for progress.



jbwalkup, 2004-02-10

Hi Volker!

>>Manfred wants my opinion on the application that he wrote, so I will give the Domino server one chance to run the agents. Exactly one.<<

My program was developed and testet on the w32 plattform. The agents fetching the RSS Feeds are working local on the notes client as on a domino server, too.

But the w32 plattform has its own problems:
During the development, I run into a problem (memory leak on the agent manager - domino server) with the LS2J interface. I posted this problem in the ND6 forum on notes.net (post from 2004-01-14). No usefull hints from there - i have found a solution myself and posted it on the forum...

Sorry, that my program does not work on your mac...


Manfred Dillmann, 2004-02-10

I have a feeling that LS2J is going to die, along with the Mac client: it always smacked of a cool idea poorly implemented. Hmm...

Ben Poole, 2004-02-10

So, question: if the Enterprise serves with Domino and uses Notes on Windoze as the client as standard, and I have no access to the server (and they won#t do anything special for me), can I still read my mail on my Mac without using the Mac Notes client?


Geoff Saulnier, 2005-06-20

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