The XPages core view panel control gets a bad rap.
It’s often knocked for its lack of flexibility. Granted, there are a number of other core and extension library controls that give you more control over the display of the data, but there are plenty of reasons why the view panel might be the right choice for your application.
- It’s easy to apply — just drag and drop to add or rearrange the columns.
- Because it’s easy, it’s also very fast to implement.
- Categorization just works — and that’s not a trivial feat with most of the other data display controls.
- It’s readily available as built-in core control. Sometimes, the extension library just isn’t available, whether it be due to corporate policy in a large environment, or just a lack of Domino administration experience available.
Even though it is often selected as the practical choice, the great news is that, with some creative coding, you can break the mold of the view panel and dramatically enhance the UI — all with built-in functionality that’s already available to you.
In this series, I’ll cover a number of different techniques for adding features to the view panel:
- Row Highlighting (on hover)
- Row selection toggle
- Enabling/disabling buttons, based on whether a document is selected
- Building a dynamic Jump To feature
- Searching by field
- Implementing editable view columns (aka InViewEdit)
- Fixing row indentation under categorized columns in views with totals columns
As with any development technique in XPages, there are bound to be numerous ways to build similar functionality. If you’ve done something similar (or better!), I’d love to hear about it.
Since I’ve been working with Notes (starting with 4.x) I’ve learned so much from those who have contributed to forums (notes.net) and maintained blogs (way too many to list). The knowledge-sharing community has been an invaluable resource in my learning and development over the years, but never more so than with the XPages learning curve.
I used to write a lot of articles in the days of Lotus Advisor and answer questions for the original incarnation of SearchDomino.com, but haven’t published anything recently. So, with plenty of inspiration from my prolific colleagues (currently at PSC and previously at GBS), I think it’s time for me to resume contributing back to the community.
I’ve got a stash of XPages Tips and Tricks that I’ve learned and documented for myself, so I’m looking forward to using this outlet to share them and, hopefully, help shorten the learning curve a bit for others.
Please follow along and let me hear your feedback!