Shiny Social Tools Meet Practicality At Lotusphere

Enterprise success with next-generation collaborative software, built around social networks, will require the same attention to deployment, development, and administration that Lotus Notes did.

David F Carr, Editor, InformationWeek Government/Healthcare

January 20, 2012

2 Min Read

Modernized Notes/Domino applications built around XPages also become good candidates for integration with IBM Connections. Because IBM's social platform is embracing OpenSocial 2.0, XPages can be embedded as HTML iFrames and use Oauth to authenticate themselves and gain information about the social context of the user. The XPages Social Enabler, available through the XPages extension library, simplifies that process.

Although Notes might no longer be the fair-haired child of the collaboration world, many of IBM's leading social visionaries are Lotus alumni such as Irene Greif, director of the Center for Social Business, which had an impressive showcase of innovations from the labs on display.

Meanwhile, some Lotusphere attendees got away from the social buzz long enough to worry about what Olaf Boerner, CEO of the German software and consulting firm BCC, calls "the daily dirty work" of administering a Notes system. In a well-attended "birds of a feather" session at the end of the day Tuesday, he led a discussion on automating Notes processes. Participants discussed techniques such as self-service provisioning of new online collaboration groups and setting dates after which groups will expire if they are no longer being used. They talked about best practices such as making sure every group has two owners with administrative rights and ensuring that when a group administrator leaves, someone else is assigned to take over that role.

Social collaboration administrators will have to tackle all the same challenges of application maintenance, particularly as platforms such as IBM Connections accumulate more history and content and layers of architectural complexity, Boerner said.

In comparison to the mundane details of Notes administration, the social business vision sounds a little blue sky, Boerner agreed. "But you need that blue sky," he said. "They are creating a vision, and it's much more appealing than it was five years ago."

Follow David F. Carr on Twitter @davidfcarr. The BrainYard is @thebyard

The Enterprise Connect conference program covers the full range of platforms, services, and applications that comprise modern communications and collaboration systems. It happens March 25-29 in Orlando, Fla. Find out more.

About the Author(s)

David F Carr

Editor, InformationWeek Government/Healthcare

David F. Carr oversees InformationWeek's coverage of government and healthcare IT. He previously led coverage of social business and education technologies and continues to contribute in those areas. He is the editor of Social Collaboration for Dummies (Wiley, Oct. 2013) and was the social business track chair for UBM's E2 conference in 2012 and 2013. He is a frequent speaker and panel moderator at industry events. David is a former Technology Editor of Baseline Magazine and Internet World magazine and has freelanced for publications including CIO Magazine, CIO Insight, and Defense Systems. He has also worked as a web consultant and is the author of several WordPress plugins, including Facebook Tab Manager and RSVPMaker. David works from a home office in Coral Springs, Florida. Contact him at [email protected]and follow him at @davidfcarr.

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