Saturday, November 03, 2007

does anyone use the Tools menu?

In Release 6, we added a feature to allow people to add their own menu items to the Domino Designer tools menu. It would allow you to set the contexts in which these tools should run, and you could specify a formula or a simple executable to be available on the menu in these contexts.

This is different from how one would normally extend Eclipse so I'm not convinced it's a good fit with the new Designer. It's "just code" so we could bring it over, but is it worth the effort? Is it helpful to allow users who may not yet be Eclipse savvy enough to extend it with another mechanism, or is it just confusing to have more than one way?

Inquiring minds want to know first if anyone ever used this function, and second, what to do with it now?? thanks :-)

10 comments:

Rob McDonagh said...

Never used it. Which is probably why I don't think you should bother bringing it over. *grin*

Michelle said...

No - me neither

Tim Tripcony said...

The only time I've ever used it was to add the conspicuously absent DXL import option: since 6 we've been able to view, export, and transform selected elements from the Tools menu, but why there's no import option is beyond me. Assuming the new Designer client will include that option, I foresee no need for that menu to be customizeable.

Charles said...

Nope, never used it.

Julian Robichaux said...

I don't use it now, but I definitely would if there was some sort of documentation telling me how to get the current Designer context within a Tool -- what database is currently highlighted, what design document is currently open, etc. This is probably easy to do, but I've never seen anywhere that tells me how to do it. Please don't feel bad telling me that the documentation is in an obvious place that I haven't looked...
;-)

As a menu option that allows you to add arbitrary "tools" that have absolutely no context within Designer, I think it's useless. As something that allows us to access Designer context and DO something with it (like DXL exporter), it could be incredibly useful.

Julian Robichaux said...

Oh, and I DO use the DDSearch Tool. It's very handy:

http://www-10.lotus.com/ldd/sandbox.nsf/0/f090b24ea76b1c0100256c45003e6396?OpenDocument

Stephan H. Wissel said...

If there is an Eclipse way how to extend your own tools then the Tools menu needs to go.
I think a page in the "readme / important changes" section of the Designer on how to add your stuff to the Eclipse IDE (menu, button or wherever it goes) should be good enough.
IMHO Domino Designer in Eclipse should work like any other Eclipse plug-in, so we can groom new generations of developer who come from Eclipse. I think as long as forms, views, agents and libraries are still there the "old Lotus guard" will very rapidly make peace with Eclipse's style of operation.
:-) stw

jonvon said...

never used it. i don't understand how to use it or what it brings to the table.

Joe Litton said...

Well, yes, I've used it (and still do). But it's not really that valuable - at least not the way I use it. I have a graphics program or two available from the Tools menu if I am in the Image Resources context, and if I'm in the Style Sheets area, then I've got a tool or two available there. But these are tools that I typically have available either from the Taskbar or the Start menu anyway ...and for that matter they're usually associated with the file type.

So I would lose very little if this feature went away.

Ben Poole said...

I didn't use it much til recently, when I finally added the ViewIcon.exe Flash app to it, which appears when I'm editing views.

That's quite nice, but I can live without ;o)

The one time I DO use it is to recompile all Lotusscript in an application - where do you envisage that useful command going in the new world order? Or is the whole project / workspace paradigm changing the need for this anyway?