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The Power of the Blog & Microsoft Sphere July 30, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Media, Review.
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I am a day short of the very first month of operating the Lotus Position Blog, and am surprised to see that we have had over 1275 hits in that month, on a topic that is fairly niche in scope. Sites like LotusPlanet.org that are Blog agrregators lend a tremendous amount of support for readership in this regard, demonstrating how effective these forms of social computing can be.

As I continue this latest experiment in the Social Computing Paradigm, I find the nuances of involvement that were unexpected to be the most interesting. The sense of community between Bloggers on similar topics is one I am discovering.

Today I also saw an article from Microsoft Research where they have demonstrated the Microsoft Sphere. This is a new take on the Microsoft Surface concept, and I am sure is of great interest for all the geeks out there. Sure to get the innovative minds crunching, with a view to future opportunities that could leverage the concept.

Have a look at a video of it here.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

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The Subtext from the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference July 28, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Commentary, Competitive, Events, Media.
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A very interesting article out by AMR Research, titled “Not Swag: Six Takeaways from Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference” outlines 6 key issues that the analyst feels either needs to be addressed or Microsoft Partners need to take on board.

They are:

  1. A need to return to innovation rather than following innovation
  2. Deliberate dependency on the channel
  3. Partners need to adapt to the new models of Microsoft business (esp. SaaS)
  4. Sharepoint, Sharepoint, and more Sharepoint
  5. Deskless Worker and Mobility initiatives
  6. Increasing Apple Competitive focus

The focus on Sharepoint, Mobility, Saas delivery, and Apple competition are all areas that have an impact on the Lotus market, and are well worth understanding by Lotus Partners.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

Microsoft are targeting 5 Million Notes Accounts this next year July 25, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Competitive, Media.
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I noticed an article today on NetworkWorld where the COO of Microsoft, Kevin Turner stated to a Financial Analysts Annual Meeting, that they would be targeting 5 Million Seats of Lotus Notes Customers this next year.

It looks like the competitive scene between IBM and Microsoft is heating up again with both Vendors claiming Marketshare gains last year.

And I know both have competitive campaigns and programs focusing on this core area of the market. It’s going to be an interesting ride in some key Australian Accounts over the next 6 months as they both struggle for mind-share and influence.

The proliferation of Sharepoint is also an interesting dynamic as this article from some Forrester research highlights it is essentially this decade’s Excel & Access, and IT departments will struggle to meet user demand for support, as the creation by users of sharepoint instances grows.

 

Regards,

Glenn Irvine

Lotus Advertising… Time for a new Idea July 23, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Media.
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I saw the recently released Lotus Collaboration Advert from the UK on Ed’s Blog this morning, and after my initial giggle (I really laughed at the guy chewing on the arm bones), and reviewing many of the comments on the Blog Article, I have come to the realisation that IBM Advertising has lost it’s way.

First the “Codernauts” then the “Codernauts 2.0” as I call Ned & Gil, rarely if ever do we see the product (a common complaint from the Lotus Blogger Community), and often it all just comes across as a slapstick comedy which, I feel, does no good for the Lotus Brand or Products.

There are so many great features that are television worthy in the Lotus products. Where do you ever see a product release or Lotusphere type event without product demos. And yet, the advertisers never show it.

I’m sure this may be a legacy of the perception that Notes didn’t look as good as Outlook, but that is ancient history. Look at the following comparison that is often displayed these days (again in the demos).

Notes vs Outlook (You'll have to Squint) 

Notes vs Outlook (You'll have to Squint)

I’m suggesting Lotus Marketers should have a look at some of the early Lotus advertising campaigns… They were catchy. In fairness, no one even notices Gil & Ned ads… I had a horrendous time asking anyone here (including our marketing people) who their names were!

Have a look at some of these videos from the early part of this decade… They catch people’s imaginations.

They were all excellent advertisements (if somewhat dated now) in their day. I would love to see Lotus lift its advertising game before we become the Beta Format of Collaboration.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

Lotus Events Section launch on “The Lotus Position” July 22, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Events, Uncategorized.
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I’ve added a page to this blog for any Lotus events in the Region.

Have a look under “lotus events” and they will be listed in the right-hand column as they are published.

I’ve kicked it off with the Lotus Collaboration & Portal Technical University coming to Sydney, Australia in September.

http://www.thelotusposition.net/apac-events/

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

Local Telco Meltdown… Time to reconsider the Grid Design July 21, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Media.
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More than a million East Coast Australians were without Telco services (Mobile, Internet, Land Line, ATM, ETFPOS) for half a day late last week because of a simple cable cutting beside a residential road. All the finger pointing that is now going on in the washup does nothing to address the fact that a single cable being cut can affect so many users.

When the early Internet was designed by DARPA, one of it’s initial design considerations was survivability of communications (in those days they were considering a city in the network being taken out by nuclear force). It would seem that given the disruption to Internet services on as large a scale as the telephony, that some of these design principles are no longer in place.

When you consider that Back to base Alarm systems, some hospital equipment and even sewerage valves are managed by telephony based systems, the problem goes way beyond emergency issues such as the Emergency Phone Number system (000 in Australia) being out of action.

In our current era of uncertainty, with acts of terrorism on everyone’s minds, it is time we look at the survivability of our Telco Grid again. The simple act of cutting a roadside cable having such a devastating effect is not acceptable. Our civilisation has slowly grown to a level of strong dependance on this network and it needs to be considered critical infrastructure.

The real concern is that our leaders in government were none the wiser about cause or impact when this incident occurred. No contingency or disaster plans in place.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

Project Atlantic – An Executive Discussion July 17, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary.
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I was looking at the new release on the Project Atlantic Website, and feel that the early release of some of the concept visuals is just enough to start discussions with key Executives who own the SAP and possibly the Notes Domino environments.

I know that I have often butted heads with the SAP effort in an organisation when discussing WebSphere Portal, but the expected integrations in Notes Domino that is being suggested in Project Atlantic is very exciting.

These future developments are just the discussion that can be had with CIO/CTOs, as well as the Infrastructure executives in an organisation. And sometimes, a simple screenshot of the concept can make that discussion a little easier to be had.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

Social Computing Industry Happenings, SocialText & the Gartner View July 15, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Media, Uncategorized.
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I was contemplating Mr Lepofsky’s move to SocialText, and started investigating the organisation, which led to a few discoveries.  First – There is an interesting initiative underway between IBM and SocialText to integrate the SocialText Workspace with the Lotus Connections Product.

I will be trying the 14 day trial of SocialText Workspace to better understand the synergies here.

On the page of SocialText’s website that described the collaboration with IBM, there is a reference to Gartner’s 2007 Magic Quadrant Report on Social Computing and Collaboration, which is a good read. Here’s the actual Magic Quadrant Diagram.

Gartner Magic Quadrant - 2007 Social Computing & Collaboration

Gartner Magic Quadrant - 2007 Social Computing & Collaboration

I also noticed an article in today’s ComputerWorld (online) about Social Networking titled “Enterprises the battleground for social networking” also an interesting read, with an interesting comment about how IBM employees have more registered users of LinkedIn than Connections. There is an obvious dynamic in that fact, but noteworthy anyway.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

ASUS Eee Laptop… Cool for kids July 13, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary, Review.
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A friend showed me her new ASUS Eee Laptop PC yesterday and I think they are a great idea for children.

She is a School Teacher and they are becoming very popular in that industry.

Solid State Drive, pre-loaded software including Open Office and Mozilla Browser, Games and Utilities for the built in WebCam and it is Wireless Enabled.

Quite a rugged device (also good for kids) and would easily fit in a school bag with not too much weight. The Linux O/S may limit the number of applications you can load, as does the 4GB Drive, but you can easily augment the disk space with an SD Card or any number of USB devices.

At ~$400 US (less if you shop around) it has a great pricetag. I’m interested to see if I can get the USB (Memory Stick) installed version of Notes working on it, but you always have Webmail availability as long as you have a wireless connection.

Nice Gadget… thinking of getting the Pink one for my Daughter. (and maybe the Black one for yours truely)

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net

iPhone 2 iWoes… and Google Lively Early Review July 11, 2008

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Blog, Commentary.
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Well the iPhone launch business day is almost done here in Australia, and there are some very tired Telco franchise employees out there.

I’m disappointed that the 16GB version of the phone ran out of stock at most stores very quickly, so I am on a waitlist. (I’m told next week some time). Some of the early risers waited in the stores for up to 4 hours (I didn’t have that long a wait), however my first post to the Lotus Position via 3G on an iPhone will have to wait until next week. I’ll have to stay with WiFi on my V1.0 iPhone until then.

When you have an hour to kill in a store like this, you can’t help but marvel at the inefficiencies in their systems and processes. The average customer sat through an easy 30 to 45 minutes from the start of the transaction. Granted there was some system problems due to the volumes (poor planning), but I just felt that a more efficent order system and process could have easily shaved 20 minutes off that time. I don’t even want to start to calculate the lost-opportunity cost on a day like today when you are looking at 50% waste…

Oh well… Still in a 2G world for a little while yet.

Had a look at the Google Lively app last night, and my initial impressions weren’t that great. It doesn’t present as a contiguous World like Second Life, just a grouping of various rooms that you can design and pop around between.

The UI looks certain to suit Teens and Late adolescents though. It really just looks like Jazzed up instant messaging really.

Can’t see myself spending much more time there. They have a long way to go.

Regards,

Glenn Irvine
glenn.irvine@thelotusposition.net