Notes/Domino 6 and 7 Forum

Notes/Domino 6 and 7 Forum

Document ordering, need some ideas
~Mark Xanjipysteretsi 12/08/2009 04:13 PM
Domino Designer 6.5.4 Windows XP

I need some mental stimulation. I've been looking at this long enough that I'm not seeing the forest or the trees. Any suggestions are appreciated. Sorry for the ramble. Ask for clarifications if you need them. I am not looking for code - I'm looking for concept.

Notes client app.
Basic concept of the db is that it's a doc control system where 'doc' = one to many Notes docs grouped by a shared category. The Notes docs within a category are to be displayed to the user in a specific sequence. Think 'directions to build a toy'. I need things in a specific order otherwise the toy doesn't go together properly. We'd call this collection of Notes docs a 'Procedure'.

In the app, I have a field 'stepNumber' used to sequence the Notes docs. All well and good.

What I'd like to do is make the process of adding and moving pages (ie Notes docs) around in a way that looks and feels more like a word processor. Ideally, I'd let the user drag and drop 'pages' but that's not possible (oh please tell me it is...please).

Appending to an existing set of docs is easy. I have a field that computes 'what the next step should be' so new docs drop to the bottom of the collection.

I cannot for the life of me figure out how to 'insert' a new Notes doc into the middle of a doc set and then have all of the pages that follow reorder themselves correctly.

For instance, I have a procedure that consists of 5 pages.

Adding page 6 is dead bang easy, got that covered.

I'd like to offer the user an option to insert a new page, say between 2 and 3 and have pages 3-5 renumber themselves to pages 4-6.

OK, that's the basics. I'm conceptually jammed - any tips are appreciated.


Now, for anyone who wants the whole thing - there's lots more going on here.

Users can copy/paste an existing document from any set of docs associated with a procedure into any other procedure. When the doc is pasted in, the system needs to be able to append or insert. I have code that appends if the doc is copied from a procedure (say our how to build a toy) into the same procedure. I haven't figured out how to handle the case where the source doc comes from a different category (say how to build a camp fire) and gets pasted into our 'make a toy' procedure.

I'm also stumped on the 'insert' thing during a paste - I can't figure out how to get Notes to recognize the insertion point automatically. For instance:
The user highlights or checkmarks step 4 from 'make a fire' and copies the doc to the clipboard. Conceptually, I see them next highlighting step 2 of 'make a toy' and doing a paste. If I could figure out how to determine that the user had highlighted step 2 of 'make a toy', I think I'd be all set, but I can't figure out how to get a handle on a highlighted doc when I can't be assured the user will use a function I provide and just hits <ctrl><v>.

The current design is very old (created in R3.2) and does not present to the user as a word processor like design. It works and people can use it but new users have a fairly steep learning curve when it gets to appending/inserting stuff into existing procedures. I made a number of changes to automate some of the page numbering/renumbering stuff and it all works, but it turns out that the user base has figured out a series of workflows based on the old design that are totally killed by the newer stuff I've tried. I'm about to revert the design to the older methods and take another run at this thing. If anyone has created something similar, I'd love to hear how you handled sequencing and changes to sequencing.

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