New beta catalog live on OpenNTF

Check it out here.

The main purpose of the catalog is to provide a list of high quality samples and good mechanisms to find the right ones. The purpose is not to replace the projects site or code bin, but to add links to good entries in these repositories.

The catalog is only a beta right now. There is no way yet to contribute new entries directly. We also want to integrate the catalog better in the overall OpenNTF site. And as with every beta there can be software defects in the code.

The intention is to let you, the OpenNTF users, try it. We’d like to get your feedback either in this blog or by emailing niklas_heidloff at de dot ibm dot com and steve.castledine at uk dot ibm dot com.

The catalog is targeted for different types of people:
– Developers can find samples including sources.
– Everyone who wants to understand capabilities and demonstrate value of N/D. Some of the web applications/projects can be run live from the catalog. Rich client components can be installed into Notes via drag and drop and then run locally.

You can find samples in various ways:
– Full text search
– Find via views (including ratings, find by committer, find by most recently added)
– Find via tags

There are three different types of samples:

1. Rich client components
For Lotus Notes end users, application assemblers and people who want to demonstrate Notes value: Components, widgets and plugins that can be installed into the Notes client by browsing a catalog and dragging and dropping components into Notes. The components can show up in the Notes sideshelf, as pop up windows triggered by live text or any other more sophisticated Notes extensions (e.g. menu contributions). These components also contain the sources that can be downloaded by developers.

2. Reusable controls
For developers: Controls that can be re-used in custom application. The sources of these controls can be downloaded and used in the IDEs IBM Lotus Domino Designer or in the Eclipse IDE. Reusable controls can be sets of design elements or Eclipse projects.

3. (Last releases of) Projects
For developers and people who want to demonstrate Notes/Domino value: Templates (NTFs) and applications (NSFs or Eclipse features) demonstrating sophisticated technical capabilities and value of Lotus Notes/Domino as application development platforms. The projects are managed outside of this catalog. The catalog contains the last releases of projects and their descriptions.

In the first stages the catalog will only contain code from OpenNTF. At a later point of time it might be extended to also contain …
4. Links to other Notes/Domino samples including sources hosted on other sites
5. Free tools and samples without source code

The catalog will not contain all code from OpenNTF:
– For all samples: Only if samples contain the full sources. Only if they have been tested at least once by a third person/party. Only if they provide good descriptions and screenshots. And only if the owners/originators ask the OpenNTF catalog owners to add an entry.
– For projects: Only the last good releases of projects are added.
– For code bin: Only fully compile-able code can go in the catalog. Snippets of code can only go in the code bin. So the code bin will continue to exist and new submissions can be done but the code bin will get less attention/visibility since the main purpose of it will be replaced by the catalog.

Right now no new samples can be added to the catalog while it is in beta stage. Later the samples can be donated by all OpenNTF committers. New submissions will be marked with a flag whether they have at least been tested by one other person from the community.

OpenNTF encourages to use ALv2 for all new samples and to convert existing samples into ALv2. However it is not mandatory for a sample to use ALv2. If another license is used this is highlighted clearly in the catalog UI.

Users who are logged in can add comments and rate samples. You can log in via the login link at the top. To comment and rate open a sample entry and then use the actions in the right column.