Wednesday, December 1, 1999

Easily inserting signatures and clip art at the cursor location


By Frank Cseh

Working in an organized way has its beauty and advantages. Knowing right where something is always saves time. We can apply this thought to Lotus Notes and Domino by creating a library of frequently used resources.

Wouldn't you like to have key resources right at your fingertips? All it takes is a little time to build up a frequently used items resource library and organize it effectively. This article offers a solution for inserting signatures, clip art, design elements, codes, OLE blocks, or any rich text item at the cursor location, any time, in a Lotus Notes session.

The Lotus Notes Clipbook is a local database where you can store any number of items and grab them as needed. It's a library of frequently used items tailored to your working needs. When you need to insert an item into your currently active document, just click on a smart-icon, select the item from the list, and it will be inserted at the cursor location.

The following ClipBook example, which you can download from my Web site, has the following groups of items:

  • Personal data (sign, photo, etc.)
  • Famous Signatures
  • Smiley
  • Arrows
  • Balls and Bullets
  • Buttons
  • Clipart
  • Flowers
  • Footer
  • Greek
  • Lines
  • LN: Design
  • LN: Tables
  • OLE

Whenever you want to insert an item into a Rich Text format field (the body of an email message, for example) just click on the ClipBook smart-icon. A categorized view-a-like dialog window will pop up, as shown in Figure A.


This is a sample of a categorized window which pops up when you click on the ClipBook smart-icon. (click for larger image)

Now expand the category, select the item, and click OK.

The database is simple and has three fields, as shown in Figure B: Title, Category, and Body Rich Text fields. The ActionBar buttons compose or update the documents.


The Category and Title fields are visible in this simple database. (click for larger image)

The SmartIcon formula does the real job, retrieving and inserting the selected item. The formula is simple, so I won't describe it line-by line:

REM "---------------Here is the ClipBook SmartIcon formula --------------------------";
path := "C:&#92&#92NOTES&#92&#92clipbook.nsf";
server :="";
key :=\@PickList( [Custom] ; server:path ; "(LookupView" ; "Select clip" ; "Select clip" ; 2 );
@If(key = ""; @Return(""); "");
@Command([FileOpenDatabase]; "" : path; "(Subject Lookup"; key; ""; "1");
@Command([EditDocument]; "1");
@Command([EditDocument]; "0");
REM "--------------- end formula ---------------------------------";