Wednesday, December 1, 1999

Learn JavaScript with a little TLCC

What was helpful to me was to schedule blocks of time at least equivalent to the minimum time suggested and go to work on a single module at a time. In this way I was not only able to make the time to go through the whole course, but I also experienced a feeling of satisfaction after completing each of the modules.

In my previous review of TLCC's R5 Application Development Update course back in June 1999 (see http://www.dominopower.com/issues/issue199906/course001.html), I said TLCC's courses were sort of like modern-day correspondence courses. But this doesn't tell the whole story. There's a great deal of interactivity built into TLCC's courses, from walking you through the installation process step-by-step to giving you meaningful activities of gradually increasing difficulty. Read on to learn more about it.

Product specifics

Here are some product specifics for the R5 Beginner JavaScript for Domino course:

  • It helps prepare you for the Using JavaScript in Domino R5 Applications exam, #191-513.
  • You should be an experienced R5 Domino developer who is familiar with the Internet and has a basic understanding of HTML.
  • You're allowed two months to complete the course.

  • The estimated time to complete the entire course is 14 hours.
  • The cost is $399.

What's cool

Figure B shows an example of one of the exercises.

FIGURE B

All of the activities include easy-to-follow instructions included on the sample forms. (click for larger image)

Here's a list of some of the things I most enjoyed about this course:

  • All of the exercises give you examples of how JavaScript works in both the Notes Client and Web browser whenever possible.
  • There's plenty of clearly written sample code to swipe and start using in your own applications.
  • There are a lot of useful tidbits of information sprinkled throughout the course that would be very difficult to gather on your own.
  • The resources section of the program provides a lot of great links to valuable information, including books and online resources.
  • The course includes a discussion database where you can ask the instructors questions. From my experience, the instructors always respond very quickly.
  • The course was developed by and is facilitated by Karen Hobert, a noted Notes Developer and Trainer.

What's not great (yet)

I've labeled this section "What's not great (yet)" because one of the greatest strengths of a course like this is the ability for the company giving the course to quickly change it for the better.

There are some minor grammatical errors in the course that are mildly distracting. These kinds of errors seem to be a given in modern technical documentation, however, and the good news is that the errors don't take away from the meaning of the lessons.

If you access the Internet through a proxy server, you will need to do some extra work to configure your connection to TLCC's servers properly for replication. This isn't really TLCC's fault, but rather a reality of accessing the Internet through a corporate system that employs a firewall.