I am working on an API that allows an OpenEdge developer to interact with a Microsoft Exchange Server. From the API you will be able to do things like create, update, and delete e-mails, appointments, tasks, and contacts. You will also be able to get attendee availability, and some of the clever stuff that you can do today in Outlook, except now you can do it from an OpenEdge application.
The intention is that this API will be accessible from any ABL session (whether character, GUI, GUI for .NET, AppServer or WebSpeed). Obviously, this means that you will need to be able to program against the API and that's where this survey comes in.
I am conducting a survey about implementation-specific stuff around the API to decide how I plan to proceed with the implementation. There are some things that I would really like your opinion on before I make any permanently irreversible decisions about the code.
I am also contemplating the idea of open sourcing the code.
So, at this point, what I need is your feedback. Your answers to the questions in this survey will have a big effect on how this API turns out so I am really looking for your input.
Point your browser at:
and let me have your input as soon as possible. There are 10 questions, but there's quite a lot of background information in the survey, so expect to spend 15 to 20 minutes on it.
Sorry.. the original link was messed up. Fixed it now.
The survey is not yet closed. It is open through Friday night US West Coast time, but I thought I'd provide a bit of an update of the results to this survey so far. If you have not yet submitted a response, please do so. I really want to hear from you.
I have received 66 responses to the survey, which I do not consider extremely scientific, but it gives a good indication.
The first question asked which version you would be satisfied working with. 63% of respondents said 10.2B. 31% are 10.1B,C, or 10.2A.
The second question asked what impact it would have if I went with 10.2BSP1. 57% said they are already using it, 28% said they would upgrade the AppServer, and the remainder said they could not move as they are tied to their existing platform.
Based on these responses, 85% of the respondents would be OK with using 10.2BSP1. Frankly, that surprised me. I had expected that number to be closer to 60%.
The next question asked about database version and only 2 respondents of the 66 are still tied to V9. That means that 97% of respondents can work with the 10.0 restriction on the database. Unfortunately, only afterwards did I realize that Int64 only came in in 10.1. So I am a little skewed on this one.
When it comes to the functionality, everyone (and I mean all 66 respondents) want the E-mail API. 82% are interested in the Calendar API. I was a little surprised that only 27 of the 66 respondents (41%) care about the .NET control.
I was also surprised at how many were interested in the Contacts API - 60%. After I wrote up the survey, I realized that I had left something important out of this. The Contacts API does not refer to contacts in the Active Directory. It refers to Contacts in the user's Contacts folder or shared contacts folders. So I am not sure how that number would change if that was a known factor.
The question on the API style was another interesting one. Only 4% of respondents prefer Procedure-style code, and thank goodness for that. 22%, though, prefer Persistent Procedure-style objects, while 72% say OO. Again, I was surprised that the OO was such a high number. I expected closer to 60%.
What really surprised me was the response to the next question which asked about the OO style API and how people would feel working with it. No one said they were against it. Only 3 respondents feel it would be tough and are having a hard time with persistent procedures. 21% said that if it wasn't OO they wouldn't use it, and 73% told me that they are willing to try as long as it is well-documented.
The error handling question was also surprising, because 60% of people pretty much don't care or don't know anything about the new error handling. The rest want me to use the new error handling.
Finally, I got more interest about the open source question than I thought I would. 20% of people said they were willing to help me with the code. Unfortunately, not all of them left me an e-mail address! 10% said they would not change the code themselves so they did not expect to contribute and 71% said that they would contribute if they modify the core code. Someone pointed out that I needed a question somewhere between "I'll give you the code if I change it" and "Sign me up!" They suggested that I might want something that didn't require pulling an all-nighter!
I got some terrific individual responses and I promise that I will be sending each of you that gave me an e-mail address a follow-up e-mail with more information as the project progresses.
If you are still interested in participating in the survey, the URL is: