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Journal of Information Systems Education

Abstract

Lotus Notes, an innovative groupware, is evolving from its origins of facilitating collaboration among small groups into an integrated and open platform for building and running client-server applications for automating workflow and office activities. Since both the application domain and the development environment are new, the development process for Lotus Notes applications is naturally ad hoc. To facilitate the creation of Notes applications, Lotus Development Corporation has provided a set of templates that can be configured and adapted by the application developers. However, the issues of how to analyze the applications domain so that the requirements can be mapped on one or more of these templates has not been addressed in the literature. The analysis problem becomes more acute because the key attributes of the applications domain and the Notes environment, namely, the collaboration among physically dispersed users who have different access rights to data that resides on distributed databases, are significantly different from MIS/database applications and the traditional analysis methods are not directly applicable. This paper presents and illustrates an orderly approach for developing applications in Lotus Notes that addresses the issues of analyzing the problem domain so that the requirements can be mapped onto a Lotus Notes template.

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