LS11 Messaging & Collaboration Strategy (Ed Brill)

(Liveblogging from Ed's session, so random observations to follow)

Marketplace Scorecard

Notes & Domino
- Steady (2nd place, I think he said)
- Fastest growing business & mobile email platform
- Vast majority running 8.5x release

LotusLive Notes
- Strong analyst & customer reception (I agree)

Lotus Symphony
- 50 Million Downloads

Where are Notes/Domino Winning
- Singapore Airlines
- 40% Increase in new clients
- U.S. Dept of Interior running IdeaJam (Go Elguiji)
- And more...

Quick review of milestones around Notes 8.5.2 (See LS Session on that)

Continue Reading "LS11 Messaging & Collaboration Strategy (Ed Brill)" »

(Live blogging, courtesy of an invitation from the IBM/Lotus Team - Thanks!)

Sitting in my comfy leather (or leather-like - can't tell) couch at the front of the Lotusphere 2010 opening general session. Mass Ensemble is performing the opening act. Amazing. To my right sits fellow bloggers Alan Lepofsky and Peter Presnel.

Lotus GM Alistair Rennie on stage, "I love the smell of Lotusphere in the morning!"

A major shout out to GBC College (Group Business Software) for hosting 500 college students (Com Sci and Business) to the event. Good to see an initiative from this.

And now... who will the special guest be? I'll know in 20 seconds.

It is.... Kevin Spacey  (Nice Bill Clinton impersonation on social networking,)  Learning the story of Kevin's journey to a film career. Now learning about there first experience with social business for independent film makers. ( In 2002. Fascinating,

Hearing how the movie "The Social Network" came to be.

Kevin asks: "What is your vision for yourself, your company, and the world? When we work together, send the elevator down, good ideas can come from anywhere - some of the best ones are the ones that got chucked over the wall."

Alistair introduces the theme: "Get Social. Do Business." Talking about Social Business Transformation.

"IBM and Lotus exist for one reason: Innovate, Outperform, Thrive - measured by only one metric: Your success."

Continue Reading "Lotusphere 2010 Opening General Session: Get Social. Do Business." »

Reflecting on Lotusphere 2011 day one...

Monday, January 31st, 2011
Reflecting on Lotusphere 2011 day 1: Lots of talk around Social Business. Of course IBM has lots of experience in this area. IBM's clients have been proving this stuff works for years. Lotus DominoBlog, SameTime Connections & Quickr - these "Social" innovations are proven and IBM's building on a strong foundation.

What's new and exciting is IBM's commitment and vision for how to equip businesses to become social businesses. IBM understands that it's not just about the technology to enable a social business. I plan to talk about this in my session on Wednesday.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow's Opening General Session at Lotusphere 2011 to learn more.

Get Social. Drive Business. BDD @ LS11

Sunday, January 30th, 2011
(Live blogging from Lotusphere 2011 in Orlando, Florida)

Alistair Rennie welcomes the audience; 12,000 Lotus BPs in the ecosystem. Introduces Mike Rhodin SVP IBM Software Solutions Group.

(Congrats on the 100th anniversary of IBM, the company.)

"To visualize the future of IBM you must know something of the past." - Thomas Watson

The world is becoming more: Instrumented, Interconnected, and Intelligent.

Talking about IBM's Smarter Planet initiative
  • Smarter Commerce
  • Business Analytics and Optimization (Market $166 Billion this year alone)
  • Social Business (Potential $100B Oppty)

Companies are embracing social media. Cites a McKinsey study that show 74% of businesses integrating social media into customer interaction.

Tenets of Social Business...
  • Engaged (Connecting people to people)
  • Transparent (Removing boundaries)
  • Nimble (Leverage networks and devices)

Continue Reading "Get Social. Drive Business. BDD @ LS11" »

Guest Post by Wendy Mack

Amy and Wendy at age two using their computersRecently in the news, Microsoft has been bragging about how schools are either currently using or switching to Microsoft Outlook.  While that is true for most schools, our school, the Mack Academy has always used Lotus Notes and has made it an integral part of our school productivity toolkit.

Our principal realized the value of technology in the schools and started training us how to use computers at a very young age.  In fact, I was two when my sister Amy and I  were introduced to Lotus Notes and when I received my first email!  

Continue Reading "How old were you when you first started using Lotus Notes?" »

Tungle App for BlackBerry

Sunday, January 23rd, 2011
Guest Post by Wendy Mack

Tungle for BlackBerry AppAs a follow-up to last week's blog post on Tungle for Lotus Notes, I decided to venture out today and install the Tungle application for my BlackBerry.  

The installation process went very smoothly, so much so that I am not going to document the steps here.   I simply downloaded the free application from my BlackBerry App World, and, once loaded, I followed the instructions Tungle provides to set up this app.  

Scheduling a meeting in the Tungle for BlackBerry AppWhat this application allows me to do is to initiate and respond to Tungle invitations from my BlackBerry, without ever having to log onto the web to schedule a meeting.  I am very pleased so far with everything I have seen and I am excited to continue using Tungle. For those of you trying to hurriedly schedule your meetings for Lotusphere, this should be a great help to you.

Moving to WordPress from Domino - Advice?

Thursday, January 20th, 2011
Guest post by Ryan Heathers

For the past few years, our company website and other related web properties have been using Domino-based Project DX as our backend CMS. We're currently in a web redesign process, and as part of this project I'm evaluating the business case to switch away from Domino to a newer CMS at the same time.

I've looked at Drupal, Joomla, WordPress, and ExpressionEngine as possible alternatives. After deliberation, I've identified WordPress as being a potentially good fit for our needs, although sticking with Domino remains a viable option. Whatever CMS we choose needs to be able to handle a full website in addition to a blog.

As part of this process, I'd appreciate hearing about other folks' WordPress experiences, especially in the following areas:
  • If you migrated content from Domino to Wordpress, how did you do it? What were the costs? Any gotchas?
  • Does WordPress meet your needs for robust handling of static pages?
  • Does WordPress have a reasonable backup and recovery system in lieu of Domino's replication ability?
  • Any ongoing costs related to WordPress maintenance or upgrades?
  • What are the best benefits that Wordpress has provided you?
Looking forward to hearing about your experiences!

Evernote's CEO, Phil Libin, shares his perspective on the necessity and value of an app store. Some of these points apply to the ongoing discussion around a Lotus App Store...

1. Meritocracy is sweet
2. Desktop software is viable again
3. Multi-platform users are the best kind
4. A strike against lowest common denominator


Read: Four Lessons From Evernote’s First Week On The Mac App Store

Source: TechCrunch

Guest Post by Amy Mack

Today I tried installing the WildFire application for Lotus Notes by ISW.  I had hoped to be able to use this as a productivity tool to save me the time of updating and managing each individual social networking site I use.

WildFire is a Lotus Notes application for your sidebar that allows you to update your status in one place and let the software do the rest.  WildFire will take that status and update all of your various social networking accounts - without your ever having to log in. WildFire is a free download from the OpenNTF web site and you can watch a video over here.

What I thought would be a quick and easy installation, however, turned into a major four hour project as I ran into many problems with both the installation process and with using WildFire itself.  For example:  in the installation instructions, they told me to go to Lotus Notes and go to "File-> Application -> Install."  In my Lotus Notes, however, I was unable to find the "Install" option.  After about an hour of frustrated searching, my sister and my dad called  Bruce Elgort who directed us to this site. (Apparently I wasn't the first person to be baffled by the process of installing composite applications in Notes. I wonder if they could have made it any harder?)

To enable the "Install" option, follow these steps:  
1. Close you Lotus Notes client
2. Browse to the plugin_customization.ini in the notes application folder\framework\rcp
3. Add
4. Save and close file and restart Lotus Notes

You can now find the Eclipse update manager under File > Application > Application Management.

Install option once steps have been completed

The installation process seemed to run more smoothly after that (although some of the instructions had to be completed through trial and error due to unclear directions), but using WildFire itself was a different matter entirely.

It was a bit confusing at first as to how to link WildFire to my private accounts, but after some hunting (and trial and error) I was able to successfully connect.  Unfortunately, I was not able to be able to make WildFire display my feeds.  Also, when I tried making a test post in WildFire, I was unable to see it when I logged into any of my social networking sites. Then, Notes crashed. Finally, in frustration, I restarted Lotus Notes to see if that would fix the problems.  When Notes was fully logged in again, I found that all of my connections had been erased.

I was initially very excited by what this product promised and I do hope to give it another try someday, but after nearly four hours of trying to make it work I've run out of time and patience.  

I have read that Wildfire is popular Notes application, so there must be a way to make it work. Hopefully, for people that want to try, this post and the link above will be a help.

Guest post by Wendy Mack LogoToday, I decided to install Tungle to make my scheduling much easier.  This free application eliminates much of the unnecessary time, emails, and mistakes that accompany scheduling events.  Synchronizing with your calendars, posts your available meeting times to the web and helps you manage your schedule without sharing private information.

The registration process of is very self-explanatory.  You can register for here.  Simply fill out your information and follow the instructions provided!

Instructions for enabling the Tungle widget with Lotus Notes.  (Found under the Calendars & Contacts tab)The only problem I encountered during setup was when I was trying to install the widget to allow Tungle to sync with my Lotus Notes calendar.  It appears that the widget feature does not work when Lotus Notes is running in Basic mode.  It is important to make sure that Notes is running in Standard Mode, before following the directions provided under the Calendars & Contacts link.  After that, I found the integration process with my Notes calendar to be extremely easy.  The only thing the widget does. however, is integrate your Notes calendar with Tungle.  As far as I can tell, you cannot use Tungle offline with Notes.  After the initial setup, your entire calendar must be managed on the Tungle site.

Screen shot of the main Tungle calendar view.  You can hover over a meeting to see its details.With Tungle, I am now able to share my availability with others so that it takes me less time to try to organize meetings and find a time when everyone else can meet.  I simply send a link to people to view my available times, and/or when I create an event I am able to select several preferred times that I can meet.  Tungle handles the rest!  My associates can respond with the time that works best for them and Tungle updates my calendars for me.  It also sends me an email notification that the meeting has been scheduled for me.

I am very pleased with what I have seen so far and I look forward to becoming more productive with this application!

Update: For a good overview of other meeting scheduling applications here's a good summary I found on Mashable,

I found this email tonight as I was archiving 2010 email... I wouldn't normally share this kind of post on my productivity blog but I felt this one was relevant and related to my own productivity.

There are many people that I have met and interacted with through the Lotus community who have helped me personally and professionally. One of these people is an IBMer: Stephan Wissel.
From:        Eric Mack/ICA
To:        Stephan H Wissel
Date:        12/07/2010 09:23 AM
Subject:        Year end reflections - Stephan, thank you for your tremendous support in 2010


An email is hardly adequate to express my thanks, but I was reflecting on the people I know who have contributed to our success with Lotus Software this year and I keep coming back to you.

Your help navigating through the technical challenges we faced with IBM/Notes getting eProductivity to market was invaluable. When I could not get others at IBM to listen to my reports of bugs found, you not only confirmed the bugs but helped me find solutions and work-arounds. In the same way, when I became discouraged with IBM/LOTUS you were always there with some words of encouragement. Stephan, you're a great connector, both to people inside IBM and out. I appreciate your stream of introductions and I always try to follow-up on yours first, as a result. Finally, your thoughtful suggestions about features that we should add have contributed to the product as well.

With heartfelt thanks for 2010 and looking forward to a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year.

Thank you,


From a productivity perspective, Stephen is one of the people that contributed to my productivity this year. He's not the only one - there are too many to acknowledge in this post. If you know Stephan, then you know that he is one of many excellent people in the Lotus community that tirelessly reaches out to others to offer support, encouragement, and at least 1000 reasons why they should create an xPages or Composite app.

Several weeks ago, my team and I set out on a mission to better understand how satisfied people are with Lotus Notes as a tool for productive work. So we did what many companies do - we set up a survey. We put together a long list of questions designed to help us better understand who our customers are, how and why they buy and what value they get from using our product. We signed up for a SurveyMonkey account and sent out invites.

A survey like that is generally not remarkable, but I think the answers to two of the questions are...

Within the first few hours of the survey launch, responses to two of the questions in the survey immediately caught my attention. The majority of survey respondents described themselves as not satisfied with Lotus Notes or neutral on the subject. Interesting...

User Satisfaction with Lotus Notes Mail & Tasks (Click for source data)

Take a look at the chart on the left. These aren't just grumpy end-users. These are senior and C-Level executives, department managers, product managers, sales executives, and IT managers from across ALL areas of their organizations. These are the pacesetters that select or influence the tools that they and their organizations will use to get things done. (When I filtered the results to examine  responses from IBMers only, the numbers were only slightly different.)

"OK", I thought, "it's early in the survey process; let's see what happens when we have a larger sample of responses."

Continue Reading "User Satisfaction with Lotus Notes Mail & Tasks" »