Announcing the Agenda Redux project

May 6th, 2006

It has been 15 years since I left Lotus. And it has been 15 years since the last release of Lotus Agenda. And in all that time, I never stopped thinking about the product. I never stopped thinking about rebuilding it. And, if you are interested enough to read this, it is likely that you have not stopped using it.

Each new advance of technology has always generated new ideas. And as the internet emerged as a dominant platform I began to feel that the world was starting to catch up to the needs of an Agenda redux. Still, in the late nineties, the internet was new as a business platform. Brower standards were in flux; they key players had not emerged. Now however, we may be at a critical mass. The paradigm of Web 2.0 carries with it the business models and supporting technology to bring back Agenda.

I am not talking about visioning and building an Agenda 3.0. This is Agenda Redux. An Agenda rebuilt in a world of,, blogging, and wiki. This is an Agenda Project where the first goal is to simply bring to the web a product with the key features that made Agenda 2.0 a valued tool.

This is also Agenda run as a Web 2.0 project. That means that you, the existing users of Lotus Agenda, are in the drivers seat. You will see the product almost from the beginning and you will decide the features, what we bring back, what we add. Starting in a month, I will publish builds on every two weeks.

I will provide a facility for the community to enter feature requests by months end. As soon as we have the minimum functionality in Agenda Redux, I will start using that to track the features. I plan to support STF files — so I recommend Agenda users to start putting thier ideas into a category called “AR Feature Requests”. Each build will be driven off of stories. You will see those stories up front and have a chance to comment on them and give direction. I will also look to you to help identify the ‘important’ stories that will ensure you get the functionality you need to make it a viable Agenda solution.

And because this is Web 2.0, the best way to start is with the first story…

STORY 1: Basic entry of items and categories

The goal here is to get some scafolding up to try our ideas on. In Agenda terms that means getting the basic building blocks in place: items, categories, and at least one hard coded view to see them in. The look will be ugly. It will look exactly like what you would expect a developer to produce when he is just worried about getting the basic building blocks together. It will not in any way represent the final look of the screens. What it will do is give us a starting point. So, for us to have a starting point, we will need to have the following features in place:

  1. It’s a web-app, so we need basic user-admin support: register, login
  2. We need at least one view, and that is all you will get :). The view will have one section bound to a category called Redux. I supposed I could have gone for nostalgia (for those of you that used Agenda 1.0) and called it ‘untilted’.
  3. We need a category manager page that lets you create, update, and delete a category.
  4. We need to support building parent/child relationships of the categories
  5. Back on the view we have, we will need to support create, update, and delete an item.
  6. We will need to have an item edit page where you can change the item text and category assignments.

I also have some non-story oriented tasks I will need to do:

  1. Get Agenda installed on my machine here. It has been a while since I used it and I miss it.
  2. Get the site infrastructure ready so that we can deploy to it by the time Story 2 is done.

And for all you Ruby on Rails fans, take one guess what I am going to use to build this.

Entry Filed under: Agenda Redux


2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. rschmidt  |  May 6th, 2006 at 9:37 pm

    Sonjaya, I’ve been thinking about Agenda a lot the last few years as well. I think it’s time has come. Computers need to start organizing our information for us. Maybe I can find some time to help.

  • 2. sonjaya  |  May 6th, 2006 at 9:42 pm

    I was hoping you would read this :) I would like to have you involved. Send me an email at sonjayatandon at and we can talk about it some more.

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