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Yes, Lotus Notes is still part of the daily routine for some folks out there. United Planet, a European developer of Enterprise Portal software, has released a Lotus Notes Business Adapter for its portal, intranet and Web application software -- Intrexx Xtreme. The Adapter aims to simplify the development of Web applications, Web services and process management for the Intrexx Xtreme Lotus Notes community. Commenting on the launch, Alexander Marsch, managing director of United Planet, said: “Many businesses have standardized on Lotus Notes for the administration of their extensive data records. Our Lotus Notes Business Adapter will enable these companies to use Domino Server data records in their enterprise portals and integrate existing Lotus Notes data into new or production systems more easily.”

Lotus Notes Business Adapter Features

Those familiar with Web development in Lotus Notes will be relieved to find out that United Planet offers an improved and more user-friendly way of doing that. Seems like it will be a piece of cake to create Web interfaces for employees needing to operate Notes data and applications, and eliminate the need to launch the actual Notes client. The Intrexx User Manager will enable companies to set clear permissions rules for each employee and external users -- thus, facilitating secure internal and external access by suppliers, customers and partners to Notes data. Part of the offering is the ability to create portal interfaces for Lotus Notes to establish a central access point for important business information. This feature may even make users more productive, if properly designed. Another feature of the Lotus Notes Business Adapter is the ability to import existing mail directories and other user-related data, such as e-mail and calendars, into the portal. Lotus Notes data then can be used for process management. Intrexx Xtreme also claims it can make it easier to develop Web applications. Lotus Notes data can be transferred using the Business Adapter to a Java-based system, which does not require the Lotus programming language to be used. Developers can use Intrexx Xtreme’s graphical user interface to simplify the entire process, using the drag-and-drop menu to create applications and structures.

How Does the Adapter Work?

According to United Planet, all it takes to get things started is a two-step process: # Create a new server connection to the Lotus Notes database in the Integration Center. # Create a new foreign data group in the Application Designer and develop your Web application with Lotus Notes data fields simply by dragging and dropping. After these two initial steps “possibilities are numerous.” The connection between Intrexx Xtreme and Lotus Notes is based on the Java API within Lotus Notes with the help of the DIIOP-Protocol (Domino Internet Inter-ORB Protocol). This approach allows the Business Adapter to have both read and write access to Lotus Notes data. All operations of the Business Adapter are possible “without any major modifications” to the existing Domino Server system. How few modifications it needs? We won’t know until we try it. Lotus Notes/Domino can be a pesky little (big) thing.

Falling Like Dominoes

Domino/Notes have been nearing the end of their golden years for quite some time now, but the fact that this technology is used as a backbone of (far too) many legacy systems makes organizations think of creative ways for prolonging life and manageability of those assets. This is when various connectors and adapters -- essentially, Band-Aids though -- come into play. To learn more about the Lotus Notes Adapter for Intrexx Xtreme, visit United Planet's Web site.