DEEP THOUGHTS 1

And now, Deep Thoughts, by Jake. Cue soothing music.

How do I categorize a blog post that defies categorization? I have a few rambling thoughts in my head that are not a clearly delineated thread, but are still worthy of publication. In the past, this task would have been easier, but now, with twittering soaking up much of the blogosphere's stream-of-consciousness activity, I feel I need to justify my blogging dross. So now, with all due respect to Jack Handey, I submit Deep Thoughts, first in a series.

In response to Jon's response of my previous post, THE GOSPEL OF TIME, ACCORDING TO JON (I sometimes think most of my creative juices are expended on my blog post titles) I say that in the sense that iCal does not provide upstream feedback, it is indeed one way. Mind you, in a pub/sub world, that is as expected, but is that what the calendaring masses (notice my focus on the masses <grin>) will need? My opinion is not.

Deep introspection and understanding of what's going on in Eclipse plugin development is hard, more so when you are targeting fully realized applications such as the Notes 8.x client or Symphony. It is worlds easier than similar undertakings would have been in the past, but it doesn't come close to the ease of, say, Firefox plugin development. Having said all that, it's impossible not to be impressed by the wonder that is OSGi, which provides Eclipse's module dependency framework upon which Eclipse plugins are built and managed. This JavaPosse podcast about OSGi is fascinating. For my baby steps in this area, a deeper understanding may not be needed, but that still puts me on the hook for two other APIs that I need to learn to build my intended functionality, namely Google Apps and OpenOffice UNO. Big hills to climb.

I am continually impressed with what IBM hath wrought with its new Lotus Notes client. It is indeed an impressive achievement and lays the groundwork for renewed interest in client-based applications and development though the Eclipse framework and XPages. Now, will this spark a Notes renaissance? As much as I'd like the answer to be yes, I fear it is not to be. Aside from legacy shops perhaps finding value in their Notes infrastructures and developers, the market has spoken. Mind you, Sharepoint is a fool's errand as well, but look to pure-web plays to continue to soak up increasing percentages of corporate application development resources. Once burned by hardwiring apps into their email systems in the past, smart managers will endeavor to separate the two going forward. This opinion dovetails with my longstanding philosophy that email is a dial tone and should be considered an essential service such as telephony that is easily compartmentalized. In general:

"Messaging (as in e-mail, not message queue services) is a commodity, and should thus not require a lot of institutional attention. If it does, something in the process of managing the messaging resource may very well need re-evaluating." -me, circa 2003

The wrench in the works is calendaring, which presently integrates too tightly into the big two (MS & Lotus) thus affecting systems decision-making. Thankfully, attention on calendaring is being lavished by Oracle, Sun, the Mozilla foundation and others that will probably break this logjam in the coming decade (I never said the revolution was imminent.) I like the way I came full circle back to calendaring with that last thought, maybe there was a common narrative in this post after all?