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XPages PhoneNumber Control - Part 1 Creating a Converter
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This is the first of a multi-post series of creating a Phone Number control for XPages.

What good is a phone number if it isn't a valid one? and What good is a phone number if you don't know how to dial it from the country you are in? What if you want to restrict phone number entry to just one country? or maybe a just a few Countries?
In this series we will go through the steps of creating our own re-usable phone number entry/display control, that can be installed once, and re-used in every nsf.

Our first step will be to create our own Phone Number Converter. Our converter's task it to take the input string and convert it to a standard format for storing phone numbers.

Thanks to the nature of open source, someone else has already done the hard part for us we will be using google's libphonenumber library to convert, validate and manipulate phone numbers.

After this post we won't have our own control yet, but at least we will have a converter that we can use for a normal inputText control.

Lets get started, but before we do, a quick word on how to deploy this solution. I will be doing all the initial development within a single NSF. XPages Component development is much easier when done within an NSF as you can test your changes easily without package / reinstalling / restarting Domino Designer. In the last blog post I will take the code out of the NSF and put it in an XspLibrary OSGi plugin so that it can be reused throughout any NSF.
So, if you are only interested in deploying this solution for one NSF then you can just ignore the last 'plugin' post. If you want to deploy via a plugin, then pay attention to everything!

 Download and Install the libphonenumber library

The github repository for the library is googlei18n/libphonenumber. Have a look at the README file for this project for latest instruction on where to download the jar.
At the time of writing, it said to go to http://repo1.maven.org/maven2/com/googlecode/libphonenumber/libphonenumber/

7.0.2 was the latest version at time of writing

Then within the 7.0.2 folder I downloaded libphonenumber-7.0.2.jar

 Once you have the Jar import it into the Jars design element section

How will we use the library?

The libphonenumber library allows us to take a string that *might* be a phone number, attempt to parse it into a phone number and report if it is a valid one or not.
If it is a valid number then we could choose to format it many different ways.

The phone number library has the concept of a 'national' number and an 'international' number. The national number is the number you would dial if you are within the same country, and the international number is the number that you would dial from another country. Our converter will make sure that all numbers are stored as the international number.

For example here in Australia, the national and international number for Google's Sydney office
National Number : 02 9374 4000
International Number : +61 2 9374 4000

Many users would simply enter a 'national' number, without a country dialing code.
When users enter a national phone number we can provide a hint as to which country the number might be from so that we can correctly convert it into an international number.

Create Version 1 of the PhoneNumberConverter

To start with, our converter will try to convert the input to an international number, if there is no international dialing code included in the input string, will use Australia (AU) as the default code. Later on we will add options so that the default Country can be changed but for now we will hard code it as AU.

To create our converter, we create a new Java Class in the Code -> Java design elements.
The main point is that the class should implement the javax.faces.convert.Converter interface

Feb 18, 2015
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