Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Getting quicker with Quickr

Spent the past few days getting (back) up to speed with Lotus Quickr Services for WebSphere Portal ( having updated it to 8.0.0.2 at the weekend ).

The more I use it, the more I (a) understand and (b) love this piece of kit.

Having hit a major hurdle last week where a customer had asked me to show document approvals - not having prepared myself, I looked like a bit of a daftie, but my bacon was saved by a swift piece of work by a colleague using Sametime and the Information Centre.

Having learnt my lesson ( prepare for everything, even if you don't expect to need to demonstrate a product in depth ), I've dug into some of the Quickr elements including: -
  • Document Types

    Relate to templates, versioning options and workflow

  • Templates

    Associated with application e.g. MS Word document

  • Property Sheets

    Document metadata associated with document type

  • Categories

    Used as filters in views, searching and navigation
and have created simple one-stage and more complex multiple-stage document approval processes, using document types.

I also learnt that the drag n' drop capabilities don't work unless the Library component is deployed standalone on a page - I found this out by creating a Project Library place and wondering where the D&D whizziness had gone. Thanks to some more Sametime interaction, I was able to resolve this - I added the Library component into the place on a NEW page, and all was well.

In short, I'm mostly prepared for tomorrow ( just going to go and back up the place, library etc. ).

More tomorrow :-)

7 comments:

Jon Mell said...

Dave - I have found Document Types and Document Templates an awesome feature of Quickr. We have created a Trovus Presentation and Proposal template which was significantly increased productivity for creating new documents, reviewing documents and consistency in terms of styles etc. No more opening the last propsoal and changing the details!

A few things I am struggling with though that I am surprised is not in the basic documentation (all apply to WebSphere Portal version)

1) How do I back up a place (to another machine so it can be restored in case of rebuild)

2) How do I change the default text (your excellent guide doesn't seem to work on 8.0.0.2)

3) How do I change the date format from US to UK?

Dave Hay said...

Hi Jon

Thanks for the comments - it's good to hear from you.

Re your questions, I'll take a look at (1) and (3) tomorrow (Wednesday).

With regard to (2), what text are you looking to change ?

Regards

Dave

Jon Mell said...

The text on the log in screen (as per your blog post). It didn't work for me on 8.0.0.2.

Dave Hay said...

Hi Jon

OK, here goes: -

(1), you need to edit the place ( aka Application Properties ) and enable "Application Backup for Archiving and Restore". Having done this, you can then go into the Manage Places page, and click the Backup or Archive link.

However, I don't think that this will really meet your requirements, as the backups remain on the Quickr server, and are not exported off. Therefore, we'd need to look at this further.

Will get back to you.

(2) Interestingly, the default launch/welcome page ( http://host.domain.com:10038/lotus/quickr ) is now generated by the theme, rather than then Quickr My Places Header portlet.

It took me a while to work this, but I can see that the theme references a JSP fragment, login.jspf, which pulls two strings; quickrArrived and fastestWay from a resource bundle called nls.MyPlacesHeaderPortletResource

However, at the moment, I cannot quite work out which file this resource bundle is read from - there are a number of such files ( MyPlacesHeaderPortletResource.properties and MyPlacesHeaderPortletResource_en.properties ) in various places, including: -

\Quickr\PortalServer\QPG\Teamspace\Teamspace\teamspace\shared\nls

and: -

D:\Quickr\PortalServer\installedApps\Quickr_My_ces_Header_quyyjdy.ear\MyPlacesHeader.war\WEB-INF\classes\myplacesheader\nl

I'll keep on digging .....

(3)

I assume you're relating to the date format in the Library component ? In my case, dates display as MM/DD/YY despite my browser language being set to en_GB.

I know that this has been a challenge in earlier portal-based products.

I'll find out if/how this can be changed, and report back.

Regards

Dave

Jon Mell said...

Dave - this is great stuff.

1) Yes, you're right about this, it's not quite what we want and I have a feeling it's not going to be possible. If I hadn't worked for IBM I'd be surprised that they offer this service for Sharepoint (
http://www-306.ibm.com/software/tivoli/products/storage-mgr-sharepoint/)
yet not Quickr!

2) That is odd - I wonder why they changed what in a minor .0.0.2 release? I think this would make a great topic for a quick guide on - how to customise the basic text - surely this is what most customers will want to do?

3) This is really, really frustrating. Have double checked that both the server locale settings and my browser settings are English UK. IBM have to PMR and fix this if they want to be taken seriously outside the US.
Despite being a huge fan of Apple I don't use their mail service as they have hard coded MM/DD/YY and it just confuses me so much I can't use the product.

Jon

Dave Hay said...

Jon, I have a PMR open with IBM Support re the date format issue, I'll let you know when I get a resolution, regards, Dave

Dave Hay said...

Hi Jon

I've not tried this yet, but I'm told that the date format problem can be overcome by adding a new en_GB locale to the underlying WebSphere Portal instance using XMLAccess and CreateLanguage.xml, as per the WebSphere Portal Information Centre.

Will try when I get a chance :-)

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