At Lotusphere 2008, there was discussions about XPages and how it would change how Notes applications are created. Since I was so busy with booth duty and other events I did not attend any of the sessions that involved XPages. However, Rob Burton from my group did attend a session that talked about XPages. Yesterday, he asked if I attended any of the sessions that talked about XPages and I said no. I did briefly hear someone talk about it, but did not pay attention. Surprising he said from what he has learned XPages does a similar thing we having been do for over a year in our Integrated Business Framework system by removing the data from the form. Similar to the concept of XPages, in the Integrated Business Framework design when you open a document you are really opening up a form that can collects data from many databases. The form is automatically populated based on a set of XML configuration data. During the save process the data is stored not as a single document, but the data is store in the corresponding databases. The technique we develop was design for use in the Notes client but could be extended to the Web.
We mentioned this approach in one of the BOF in Lotusphere 2007 and some at the BOF thought it was not a good idea. Interesting that is now the big new thing. XPages will probability do much more than what we have created, but I am glad that IBM is move towards this approach. It will be a good thing when XPages comes to the Notes client.
When I have time, I will create a demo database showing this technique and that it can be done using existing Notes clients. However, I will only be able to give you a demo but not provide the source code since the code is proprietary.