True North 19.Oct.07 02:47 AM a Web browser Domino Designer All Releases All Platforms
I have to say, after 14 years of developing with Lotus Notes I am occasionally flabbergasted at the number of old bugs that remain in the development environment. What's your 'favorite' pet peeves with the world's least mature, yet elderly developer environment?
I'll kick it off with a few.
1. Sometimes when you test a form then try to switch back to the designer, you can't ALT-Tab back. Instead, focus locks on to the Properties box and there is no way to get back to either the designer or the client without closing the properties box completely. (Designer doesn't even appear in the task bar.)
2. Why do I seem to be flooded with prompts everytime I push the STOP or CLOSE DEBUGGER button when debugging LotusScript. IF I PUSH STOP I WANT TO STOP. What is SO hard to work out about that?
3. HideWhens. Basically, they still often fail to work without incurring all manner of problems after all these years. Don't even get me started. The don't work on Richtext in tables unless the RTItem is preceded by a space. Another example, right now I have a form with a single value that computes to either @True or @False. The hidewhen formula has the value of the Field as it's Hidewhen. For example, the field called IsNotDebugMode, has a value of "[Debug]" = @UserRoles. All hidden fields have a hidewhen formula of IsNotDebugMode. This includes the line with the field itself. All lines work except that first line. I know a hidewhen can work if based on a field on that line but in this case it doesn't. I've had hidewhen where even @True didn't trigger it to hide correctly! Useless, inconsistent crap that eats up hours of time try to work out.
4. The Principal field. (Pause and breathe deeply.) The most inconsistent and pitfall ridden journey anyone has ever taken to send an email with a recipient-friendly Sender Name - a task that can be almost nightmarishly difficult at times. I don't want a long list of rules to follow. What I want is to set the damn Principal field to whatever I damnwell please and for it to WORK ACCORDINGLY, regardless of Run As Web User, signer of the agent, SMTP or Native notes. If I set it, I want to use it. The rest should be left to the black box. JUST DO IT ALREADY. Why does this have to be so friggin' hard on the web.
5. HORRIFIC - NAY, ALMOST TORTUROUS - code editors. Unable to reliably perform stacked undos in either Lotus Script (it can actually completely screw your code up by putting 'undone' code back to the wrong place!!) or Formula Language. A LotusScript Editor that does not keep Sub and Function names in alphabetical order. A Search and Replace dialog that doesn't do either reliably. And what's with making the Find and Replace window modal? What idiot decided that was a good ideal? You have to close the damn Find dialog every time you want to edit or scroll the text a bit to see what the lines folling your find contain. There used to be a product called Formula Editor on the market that you could plug into Notes. It would format your code the way the LotusScript editor does. Lotus could have bought it and incorporated it. But nope. They didn't. And it vanished in the mist.
6. Document Items in the debugger are not in alphabetical order. They are in the order that they were written to the document (I think)? Just how friggin' useful is that to a human being that is trying to debug a routine? Lazy programming. "It's too hard..."
7. The Code Helper in Formula Language frequently vanishes if you mistype something and have to backspace. Worthless. In fact, why not just slap in the content of the template INCLUDING parameters (or make having it do that a Programmer a settable pane property). THAT would be useful.
Even after more than a decade of designer revisions it still has less functionality, reliability and programmer-task-friendliness than Micro Focus COBOL's Workbench had in 1995.