Monday, November 16, 2009

RSS Feeds For Notes Documents

Yes...I haven't fallen off the earth. Thanks for asking. Just spending a lot of time learning other parts of the Lotus collab stack and having to crack open the books to study up on <shudder> admin topics leaves little time for development stuff anymore. I still plan to change that. :-)

I thought I'd throw this very simple but highly useful tip out here because I have found that not everyone is aware of it. In fact, I was asked about this topic the other day. The question at hand: Can I create an RSS feed that opens a document in the Notes client rather than on the web? The short answer: Of course!

This is very easy to do, since you can use the Notes URI format in place of the standard HTTP URI.

Here is a snippet of XML code from a feed that demonstrates this:

<title>Creating an RSS feed with Notes URIs</title>
<pubdate>Thu, 24 Feb 2005 10:39:25 PM -0400</pubdate>
<description>I posted this tip to SearchDomino in 2005
and it was the 2nd time I became a Hall of Fame tip winner.</description>

Notice the <link> element references a Notes identifier rather than a URI referencing a web resource via HTTP. When users view this feed in their RSS aggregator, it will provide links that open the documents in your Notes client.

The <link> element of your feed can be constructed using a formula (usually calculated in the document or in the view column) such as:

"<link>notes:///" + @ReplaceSubstring(@ReplicaID; ":"; "") + "/AllDocuments/" +
@Text(@DocumentUniqueID) + </link>"

You can replace "AllDocuments" with the name of your view or use its design ID.

Combined with the Feeds sideshelf component in Notes 8, this makes for a very handy mechanism for distributing document updates to end users in a more modern fashion.

1 comment:

Thilo Hamberger said...

Hi Chris, great to have you back. :)
Two things: First if you use "0" in the URL then it opens in the default view. Second, I was thinking of replacing the interest profiles with RSS just like Google Alerts. Do you have any idea if it's possible to customize RSS feeds in that way?