Lotus Notes

Company might leave Notes App Dev (but not email) due to lack of developers.

I received a sad phone call yesterday. My former company is considering abandoning the Notes/domino platform for Application development due to the inability to find a Notes/Domino Developer. They would keep Notes for Email as they’re very happy with Notes overall. But not having a resource available to continue to enhance the applications is becoming a big problem.
They have iSeries (AS/400) developers on staff and I guess are considering moving app dev to PHP on the iSeries. I guess that’s a supported language in some fashion.

One of the problems of finding a person is that the company is a little “old school” in some ways. They have no interest in “Work form Home”. They want someone, full time, in Lebanon Pa. Lebanon is not exactly a hot bed of technology. They also need someone “affordable”.

I’m on good terms with them and they’ve asked me to come in next week to have a brief discussion with the President of the company on the pros and cons of this thinking. Of reasons to stay with Notes as opposed to moving to a different platform. Almost all the apps are currently Notes Client apps, and before I left, the decision was made to move them to XPages to embrace the web.

Of course I don’t want to see them move off Notes, though not being able to find an affordable resource is a pretty big hurdle to the discussion. I could go on and on about some of the advantages or the platform, Security…. agents… XPages… Maybe get into RAD though it’s clear other platforms can be RAD as well to at least some point. I know very little about PHP, especially PHP on iSeries.

The interesting thing is that they really don’t have any true Web developers in house. They have excellent RPG developers who can do SOME things on the Web like Web services and Net.Data pages. So there’s going to have to be some training that has to take place. Do they bring someone up to speed on Domino/XPages? Or do they just forget it and go the PHP route? It boggles my mind that they can find RPG developers pretty easily but not Notes Devs.

If anyone has any opinions or thoughts I’d sure appreciate hearing them.