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LCD (Lotus Component Designer) failed in the marketplace. Since the bulk of it was repurposed for Notes & Domino as the XPages designer, one of its criticisms has been that heritage. While I'm not a big fan of the architecture -- the fact that it relies on J2EE is a huge turn off for me -- I'm not willing to buy the argument that because it came from LCD it must be no good.
First, while I agree with Rob's comments up to a point and while the intent was clearly to just slide in LCD as a low-cost and low-time feature add without it being a huge investment in the client; I believe that attempt failed at being both low cost and low time. There has been a lot of good work since then and I think the biggest thing that holds it back now is that its squeezed into Designer instead of being its own client where the tools could be sensibly designed in a way that works for that programming model.
Second, the reason that LCD failed was far less related to LCD itself, and much more related to the fact that it required an entire Workplace, Portal, Websphere, DB2, and LDAP infrastructure to do anything useful with -- and by useful I'm stretching to include working portal apps as "Useful".
So, calling XPages as warmed over version of LCD isn't really fair or accurate. Be critical of a very poor design environment that doesn't compare well to modern software IDE design, and by all means be critical of sandwiching it into DDE to the detriment of both, but don't write it off for its heritage.
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