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New Post 10/19/2007 1:27 AM
User is offline PPL
953 posts
1st Level Poster


Alarms... 
Modified By PPL  on 10/19/2007 2:48:21 PM)

I'm working on integrating a calendar into SQLNotes. One common aspects of a calendar is recurring events and alarms.

Ecco had a separate system for alarms, and I think that this was quite wise. I'll therefore follow a similar path (with of course a few goodies of my own)

Ecco style:

  1. An alarm file will be created (in the application data/user folder). It will contain all alarms.
  2. When opening a file, if the file alarms are not registered in the alarm file, it will prompt if you want to add these (annoying but necessary)
  3. Multiple alarms available (i.e. 3 day before, 1 day before, 1 hr before)

Goodies of my own:

  1. Since we're using GUIDs for alarms, it will only prompt if new alarms are found or if alarm parameters are different. Hence opening copies of your common files will not display the prompt, since the GUIDs will be the same.
  2. The alarm checker will be a separate utility with it's own UI and API. Tpically started at Windows startup (or automatically launched on opening SQLNotes). Hence, alarms will pop-up even when SQLNotes is closed. Users will be able to select which files to monitor. Also, this way, multiple instances of SQLNotes will not cause multiple alarm triggers.
  3. All fields types will have alarms. Dates (of course) but also text, y/n, and number fields. So an alarm may be triggered when a number exceeds a certain value, for example.
    [edit] When SQLNotes will be able to read web sites (aka web services, as it is planned), you could be warned when your bank account gets below a certain level, or when a stock goes below a certain value!
  4. Alarm levels. Users will be able to set alarm levels. Low levels will be displayed in a non-modal window while high level ones will pop-up and require immediate action.
  5. Postponing will be either x min later, a specific time, or a new criteria

Now these are way beyond what Outlook can handle, so syncing will be affected a bit.

What do you think? Do I have it all covered?


Pierre (Win XP Pro SP2, Admin, Auto-updates ON, Firefox, Acer TravelMate 660 graphics)
 
New Post 10/19/2007 5:28 AM
User is offline viking
501 posts
1st Level Poster


Re: Alarms... 
Modified By viking  on 10/19/2007 4:28:59 AM)

>>Multiple alarms available (i.e. 3 day before, 1 day before, 1 hr before)

x days, x hrs, x min before as well as follow up alarms: x days, x hr, x min after

 

>> Alarm levels. Users will be able to set alarm levels. Low levels will be displayed in a non-modal window while high level ones will pop-up and require immediate action.

Maybe also have an audible option?

 

>>Postponing will be either x min later, a specific time, or a new criteria

 How will postponing affect multiple alarms. For example: 1 hr before/20 min before/ at Appointment/ 5 min after

After the 1st alarm goes off, is it only the next alarm (20min before) that may be postponed? If so, and it is postponed 10 min, will we have: 10 min before/ at Appointment/ 5 min after ?

 

 


My goal: (Viking # Posts) > 0.5 * (Pierre # Posts)
 
New Post 10/19/2007 2:22 PM
User is offline jsonnabend
179 posts
5th Level Poster


Re: Alarms... 
Modified By jsonnabend  on 10/19/2007 1:26:30 PM)
That sounds awesome, especially your additions. Two quick questions.

One: how hard would it be to have alarms be settable by machine and folder or by logged-in user? I'm not sure exactly how I would implement this from the user's perspective, but I'd love to have options to show or hide alarms based on which machine the file is on + which folder is triggering the alarm (e.g., alarms for Folder1 should run on Machine1 and Machine2 but alarms for Folder2 should only run on Machine1). Likewise, don't show alarms when Sally is the logged in user but show them when Joe is the logged in user. I suppose the former request is a bit strange, but the latter request should make perfect sense (I think).

Second, why have a separate alarm file? Not a criticism, just wondering the thought process. I'm assuming the alarm file will be an access db, yes?

- Jeff

[edit]One more thought. Ecco allows alarms to trigger (although feebly) external applications. I'd love to see, down the road some, perhaps, an ActiveX event of "BeforeAlarmEvent" that fires before the alarm UI is shown. If that event included the GUID(s) of the alarm(s), along with a return boolean parameter of ShowUI, an add-in could (a) provide an upgraded/custom alarm UI and (b) run custom applications based on alarm details.[/edit]
 
New Post 10/19/2007 3:07 PM
User is offline PPL
953 posts
1st Level Poster


Re: Alarms... 

re: One: Part 1: humm... Part 2: Logged-in user  would be no problem. Problem is though that you may log-in under a different name at work than at home, so aliases would be needed.

re Second: I don't know why. After writing the initial post, I questioned myself that very same question. I guess the easy answer is 'cause Ecco does it that way... As it gets implemented, I may decide to dump the file storage and keep it only in memory. We'll see.

re: more thought: Triggering external application is the easiest thing to do (shell x,y,z). We'll see when we get there.

Thanks for the thoughts!


Pierre (Win XP Pro SP2, Admin, Auto-updates ON, Firefox, Acer TravelMate 660 graphics)
 
New Post 10/19/2007 3:28 PM
User is offline jsonnabend
179 posts
5th Level Poster


Re: Alarms... 
 Pierre wrote

As it gets implemented, I may decide to dump the file storage and keep it only in memory.


If I'm understanding correctly, it has to get stored somewhere -- it can't always be in memory for obvious reasons. So the question becomes, where to store it: main file or separate file. I'm not sure the answer makes all that much of a difference.

Besides, as long as you give me an API, I'm happy ;-)

Keep plugging. I'm excited about making the move (and apprehensive at the amount of work I'll need to do that).

- Jeff
 
New Post 10/19/2007 3:38 PM
User is offline PPL
953 posts
1st Level Poster


Re: Alarms... 

>So the question becomes, where to store it: main file or separate file. I'm not sure the answer makes all that much of a difference.

I think that the only thing going for a separate local file is datafile availability.

If it is a network file and you're not connected (and off-line mode is not enabled), data cannot be read, hence no way to retrieve the alarms. A local file is always available...


Pierre (Win XP Pro SP2, Admin, Auto-updates ON, Firefox, Acer TravelMate 660 graphics)
 
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