Andrew Pollack's Blog

Technology, Family, Entertainment, Politics, and Random Noise

Free the Bookmarks! (or "What we should learn from the OSS movement")

By Andrew Pollack on 06/29/2008 at 08:24 PM EDT

Firefox 3.0 has been out for about 1 week. There are more than 280 community created "Themes" -- color and icon sets. There are over 475 add-on tools for it which make managing bookmarks better for people. There are nearly 150 add-on tools just for better handling the tabbed interface.

Why? What's the deal? Do the thousands of contributors to the Mozilla project all just suck at creating user interfaces? No. It means the open source movement recognizes that no matter how good their UI skills are, a huge number of users out there who will want to do things differently. There are so many of them that a thriving community exists around these add-ons for Firefox.

Lotus Notes has bookmarks too. It has bookmarks and it has themes. At one time these things were going to be skinable though the feature was pulled. I think this was in the R5 timeframe.

There are UI teams at Lotus working on the Notes UI and I'm sure they're working hard on making it the "ideal" experience for everyone. They can't win this way, however, unless they get around to opening up the bookmarks data store. Personally, I see no reason why the entire design of bookmarks database can't be completely open. If it were, creating your own bookmarking tools would be easy.

This is what I want from any new UI bookmark management feature in the Notes client.

#1. I want the storage and organization of bookmarks to be fully documented. This could be a stand alone file -- xml, binary, or whatever -- as long as its fully documented. If it is an NSF database, the elements it uses should be documented and no data should be stored in it that isn't managed just the way any Notes designer would. No special database or item types, no hidden script libraries, and no undocumented features.

#2. I want a document created which indicates what conditions must be met for any NSF to be used as a bookmark database. What named indexes are used, what fields and view columns must exist -- all of it.

#3. The new format should include room for bookmark icons which may or may not be the same as the database icons built into the databases. This is a critical idea change. There is no reason why I as a user should be always satisfied with the database icon chosen by a developer when the db was created. I should be able to assign my own icons. These should support common image types (JPG, GIF, PNG) as well as standard platform icon formats (e.g. .ico for windows).

#4. I want to be able to stack replicas, or unstack them. When unstacked, I want to be able to sort them by server, by replica id, by path name, by database name, and by file name.

#5. I want to be able to put my database bookmarks in folders, nest the folders, and view different folders in different ways.

#6. I want to view the bookmarks in a folder as icons, as file names with small icons, or as a details list showing title, filename, servername, unread count, etc.

What am I missing?


There are  - loading -  comments....



Other Recent Stories...

  1. 05/05/2016Is the growing social-sourced economy the modern back door into socialism?Is the growing social-sourced economy the modern back door into socialism? I read a really insightful post a couple of days ago that suggested the use of social network funding sites like “Go Fund Me” and “Kickstarter” have come about and gained popularity in part because the existing economy in no longer serving its purpose for anyone who isn’t already wealthy. Have the traditional ways to get new ventures funded become closed to all but a few who aren’t already connected to them and so onerous as to make ...... 
  2. 04/20/2016Want to be whitelisted? Here are some sensible rules for web site advertisingAn increasing number of websites are now detecting when users have ad-blocking enabled, and refuse to show content unless you "whitelist" their site (disable your ad-blocking for them). I think that is a fair decision on their part, it's how they pay for the site. However, if you want me (and many others) to white list your site, there are some rules you should follow. If you violate these rules, I won't whitelist your site, I'll just find content elsewhere. 1. The total space taken up by advertisements ...... 
  3. 12/30/2015Fantastic new series on Syfy called “The Expanse” – for people who love traditional science fiction[] “The Expanse” is a new science fiction series being broadcast onthe Syfy channelthis winter. It’s closely based on a series of books by author James S. A. Corey beginning with “Leviathan Wakes”. There are 5 books in the “Expanse” series so far. If you’re a fan of the novels you’ll appreciate how closely the books are followed.TIP: The first five episodes are already available on Syfy.com. If you’re having trouble getting into the characters and plot, use those to get up to speed.The worlds created for ...... 
  4. 10/20/2015My suggestion is to stay away from PayAnywhere(dot)com  
  5. 08/07/2015Here is one for you VMWARE gurus - particularly if you run ESXi without fancy drive arrays 
  6. 08/06/2015The Killer of Orphans (Orphan Documents) 
  7. 06/02/2015Homeopathic Marketing: Traveler on my Android is now calling itself VERSE. Allow me to translate that for the IBM Notes community... 
  8. 03/17/2015A review of British Airways Premium Economy Service – How to destroy customer goodwill all at once 
  9. 02/26/2015There's a bug in how @TextToTime() and @ToTime() process date strings related to international standards and browser settings. 
  10. 01/21/2015Delivering two new presentations at Developer Camp (EntwicklerCamp) 2015 in Germany 
Click here for more articles.....


pen icon Comment Entry
Subject
Your Name
Homepage
*Your Email
* Your email address is required, but not displayed.
 
Your thoughts....
 
Remember Me  

Please wait while your document is saved.