Goodbye, Lotus Notes

Notes logo tombstoneToday is my last day as a Lotus Notes user. Assuming all goes well, I’ll be accessing my work email and calendar using Outlook starting tomorrow.

For the most part, I’m not sad to see Notes go, but I have to say that I thought it was an intriguing product when I first saw it in the 1990’s. At that time, I was working for a firm that provided outsourced technical support for off-the-shelf software products and I somehow assumed responsibility for Notes end-user and developer support.

As many proponents are quick to point out, Notes is an application development platform and a document-centric database, not just an email program. It provides a forms tool for viewing and editing documents, a view system for displaying and sorting lists of documents, and an access control security system.

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Yipes! Stripes! (Color-coded Rows in Excel)

Fruit Stripe Gum adI occasionally receive spreadsheets where rows of data are colored yellow, teal or pink to indicate some special status. Essentially, the fill color feature is used like a highlighter marker, something the paint bucket icon on the toolbar or ribbon makes easy to do. In and of itself, there’s nothing wrong with highlighting rows, but problems can arise if color-coded rows are the only way that some important piece of information is communicated.

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