Lotus Foundations, Smell Maps and Cholera

Getting up at 7:00 a.m. on a sunday morning after a horrible trip to Lotusphere is not really fun. But Business Development Day starts at 8:00 a.m. and its usually worth to attend. However, nothing really new was announced today, they keep the secrets till tomorrow mornings Lotusphere opening session.

So what happend today in the morning: A cool Notes-Quickr-Connection-Sametime Demo by Chris Crummey. Mary Beth Raven showed some new features to federate and visualize all sorts of tasks. So if you use Follow Ups in Notes mail, To Do lists and of course Activities in Lotus Connections you can no see them all in one context. But thats only one use case, the technology can be used to visualize all data in views. You will be able to simply generate line graphs, bar charts or bubble charts from views, no matter if the come from NSF or CloudScape data. So no third party apps needed. I know some vendors who will not like that.

Mike Rhodin announced a new SMB offering called Lotus Foundations. Lotus Foundation seems to be a bundle offering for SMB companies with less than 500 users. Lotus Foundations includes Domino services for collaboration, file management services, backup tools, firewall, productivity tools (Lotus Symphony), directory services. I have not seen real time collaboration, so Sametime awareness or Web Conferencing might not be included. So Lotus Foundation should compete with Mircosofts Small Business Server at a „very affordable price“. So lets wait for the pricing and the technical architecure – big question is how many servers this small company wil need to roll Lotus Foundations out.

Finally some intersting thoughts from Steven Johnson, author of books like „The Connected Lives of Ants, Brains, Cities, and Software„. He learned about the history of fighting cholera in the 19th century, a kind of victorian version of CSI. An intersting story about open data platforms, visualization of data and the power of beeing an amateur that leads directly to our new web 2.0 social software buzzword world – and to services like the New York City Subway Smell Map. I would have needed that service yesterday 😉

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