A whle ago I wrote a blog post on Formatting Dates on Links, which talked about using F4 to identify the methods of the underlying XPages Java classes. It’s something I’ve done for a while ever since Tim Tripcony and Nathan Freeman told me about it. It’s a technique which has proved particularly useful when writing parts for the XPages Extension Library book currently in development. At the time David Leedy said it would make a good NotesIn9, as something that would work better visually.
Shortly afterwards I was looking at Tabbed Panels and writing a button to switch tabs, using getSelectedTab and setSelectedTab. It’s not rocket science, but a simple example of where knowing about F4 becomes useful for seeing what methods are available. So I finally recorded a NotesIn9 for David. The audio is not wonderful, something went wrong somewhere between outputting the file for David and putting it into NotesIn9. But the content is useful, particularly for new XPages developers looking to know what methods are available after you use the global getComponent() function or for more seasoned XPages developers looking to get a better understanding in how XPages and Java interact. To be honest, I think David took pity on me after I tried to explain the technique to another NotesIn9 guest and up-and-coming member of the community, John Jardin, when he was investigating some of the Extension Library controls. But it does show that once you’ve got the understanding, you have the tools to dig deeper and expand your knowledge. That has always been one of my aims, to empower and, as a result, foster knowledge and skills so that XPages and Domino remain vibrant and the community continues to build on top of one another’s expertise. It’s also a key principle behind Intec’s XPages mentoring package and our work with TLCC, to provide learning and build on that learning to give developers a jump-start in not only technical knowledge but also dealing with real-life development challenges to build confidence and expertise.

3 thoughts on “NotesIn9: F4 Is Your Friend”

  1. Paul – apologies slightly off topic but still XPage related 😉

    Just trying to find someone to confirm that to use the application scope for a Java Bean it needs to be a static class. i.e. got a NAB lookup which is cached in the bean as an ArrayList so subsequent calls dont have to perform a lookup to the expensive db.

    I could only get it to retain the cache if I used a static class – do you think this is correct or have I ballsed up my Java code? Was going to fo a blog article but would hate to state the wrong thing.

  2. I don’t think it needs to be static, but if you try to store any Notes element (View, Document, Entry, Item etc), that’s unlikely to work because of recycling. XPages Help Application has examples of Application Scoped managed beans holding data, for which I create a class to hold the variables from the underlying Notes documents. { Link }

    If you go onto the Index, bear in mind the latest downloadable version has a bug where I refactored a method name, in cc_viewIndex Custom Control, the text and link should be help.getLevel()

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