Code snippet – jQuery

This morning I was working on a web application, and I came up with a pretty neat and simple little solution. So I just wanted to share it, in case anyone else need something similar.

I have a webpage with an HTML form. Each input tag has an attribute called notesfield, matching the name of the field in Notes where the value is stored:

<div class="col-md-3">
    <label>First Name</label>
    <input class="form-control" type="text" notesfield="FirstName" value="" />
<div class="col-md-2">
    <input class="form-control" type="text" notesfield="MiddleInitial" value="" />
<div class="col-md-3">
    <label>Last Name</label>
    <input class="form-control" type="text" notesfield="LastName" value="" />

Then I created a simple function that will call an agent on the Domino server, which will return all the fields on the specified document as JSON. This function is called after the HTML page is fully loaded.

function loadNotesFields(docunid) {
	var notesfieldname = "";
		url: "/database.nsf/ajax_GetNotesFieldFields?OpenAgent", 
		data: {"NotesUNID":docunid},
		cache: false
	}).done(function(data) {
		$('input[notesfield]').each(function() {
			notesfieldname = $(this).attr("notesfield");

The function is actually extremely simple, and here you can see the power of jQuery. What I do is to perform an Ajax call to a Domino URL, passing a UNID to the agent to use in the lookup. I set cache to false, to avoid the browser from reusing previously retrieved data (this is a good thing to do if the data retrieved can be suspected to change frequently).

The jQuery .ajax() functions returns the JSON in the data object, and when the call is done, the callback function loops through each input element with an attribute of notesfield, reads the value of said attribute and then sets the value of the input element to the corresponding Notes value.

The only thing left is to write the agent that will return the JSON. It could look something like this:

Dim urldata List As String

Sub Initialize
	Dim session As New NotesSession
	Dim webform As NotesDocument
	Dim db As NotesDatabase
	Dim doc As NotesDocument
	Dim urlstring As String
	Dim urlarr As Variant
	Dim urlvaluename As Variant
	Dim i As Integer
	Dim json As String

	Set webform = session.DocumentContext
	'*** Remove leading "OpenAgent" from Query_String
	urlstring = StrRight(webform.Query_String_Decoded(0),"&")
	'*** Create list of arguments passed to agent
	urlarr = Split(urlstring,"&")
	For i = LBound(urlarr) To UBound(urlarr)
		urlvaluename = Split(urlarr(i),"=")
		urldata(urlvaluename(0)) = urlvaluename(1)
	Set thisdb = session.CurrentDatabase
	'*** Create content header for return data
	Print "content-type: application/json"
	'*** Get Notes document baed on NotesUIND argument
	Set doc = db.GetDocumentByUNID(urldata("NotesUNID"))
	'*** Build JSON for all fields in document except $fields
	json = "{" + Chr$(13)
	ForAll item In doc.Items
		If Left$(item.Name,1)<>"$" Then
			json = json + |"| + item.Name + |":"| + item.Text + |",|+ Chr$(13)
		End If
	End ForAll
	'*** Remove trailing comma and line break
	json = Left$(json,Len(json)-2)	
	json = json + "}"
	'*** Return JSON
	Print json	
End Sub

Happy coding!

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Bob Balfe (@bobbalfe)

    That looks like it will get the raw field value, if you did a doc.computewithform right after you could get the computed values. Very cool!

    1. Karl-Henry Martinsson

      Yeah, I could do that. I often leave that line out if I don’t need it, as it (from what I understand) affects performance somewhat. But in some cases it is very useful!

  2. MarkyRoden

    That’s awesome. I convinced a customer to do a very similar thing with an ExtLib document REST service.

    What that then also does for you it is allows you to serialize the form and send updates back to the server via REST again 🙂

    It also means you can add a new field to the feed and the form without changing the code used to transfer data.

    That then leads you down the path of data binding on the client and beyond. Fun fun fun 🙂



    1. Karl-Henry Martinsson

      That is actually exactly how I do it in my application. I have one application updating the Domino database using this technique. Then I just copied the HTML form to another application, set the fields to disabled, added this code (pointing the agent to read data from the first database) and now it is populated automatically.

      1. MarkyRoden

        Excellent 🙂

        Are you able to use a REST service? Less coding 🙂

        1. Karl-Henry Martinsson

          I pretty much wrote my own REST API against the database, but it is not 100% true REST. Some of my agents returns HTML instead.

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