Monday, June 22, 2015

The IBM Connections Cloud June 2015 Release Is Now Live -- Check it out!

View Comments
Over the weekend we pushed out updates to our IBM Connections Cloud users (for those fathers out there, consider it a Happy Father's Day gift).

You will find updates throughout the experience both in the web and desktop.  For example, for Mac users you can now share files with Communities directly from Finder without ever needing to open a browser. Just right-click on the file, and voilá:


Another update this month was for developers.  Developers can now take advantage of the embedded experience extension point within the Activity Stream.  Each person and community has an activity stream (which follows the ActivityStrea.ms / OpenSocial 2.0 standard) which allows 3rd party apps to inject events into it (e.g. you could get alerts from an app telling you that an approval is required).

One of the first developers to take advantage of this in the cloud is AppFusions. They've now built connectors that are sure to please various roles within an organization. For example, if you want to get updates to files updates in Box, you can.  If you want to get updates when new code has been submitted to GitHub, you can. Or maybe you are a marketer and want to stay up to date with updates from Twitter.

Check out this video to see it in action!



The following slides summarize all the cool new things that are now available for IBM Connections cloud users.  Check these out to get an idea of what else is new:



And stay tuned for more news very very soon...

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Next Week: Join Me at the IBM Connections Files and Communities Webcast

View Comments
Next week, I'll be participating in a webcast to talk about all the new capabilities that we've added to IBM Connections Files and Communities. The webcast was put together by the team over at SocialBizUG.org.

David Brooks, the lead architect for the IBM Connections platform, will be joining me just like he did at IBM ConnectED earlier this year. Our goal is to give you an update of all the cool things that are now part of the product.



As a reminder, back in March, we introduced IBM Connections Files on Cloud, an easily accessible file sharing and sync offering.  We'll talk about this new offering and recent upgrades to Connections Communities that allow seamless team communication and collaboration beyond traditional boundaries.

Join this webcast to find out how these new capabilities allow users to:
  • Stay in sync across mobile devices (including both Android and iOS devices) using different personal settings
  • Leverage the new file sync and native mobile app capabilities to work anywhere and access content anytime
  • Securely collaborate with customers and business partners 
  • Improve productivity with content that is provided in context 
  • Stay connected with colleagues using profiles that provide business cards to their contacts
To register for the webcast, click here. See you next week! If you missed it, here's the recording.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

IBM Connections Adds Secure File Sync and Share Offering On-premises

View Comments
Following the release last quarter of our secure file sync and share offering in cloud, today we have just released the equivalent offering for those customers who would like to deploy this on premises. This new offering gives customers a new way to buy IBM Connections and get just the Files portion of the platform. This makes it easy to get started and customers can grow and buy the entire IBM Connections suite once they are ready to use other capabilities such as Communities, Forums, Ideation, etc.

The capabilities have already been highly praised by analysts such as Forrester and OVUM. In fact, check out this report from OVUM to find out why IBM Connections is a strong candidate to provide all the benefits and features an enterprise user might need from a file sync and share solution.

This offering includes:
  • Mobile apps for iOS and Android
  • Desktop plugins for Microsoft Windows and Mac (including integration into Microsoft Office 365 Desktop apps such as Word, PowerPoint, Outlook and Excel)
  • External file sharing (ie. share files with people outside of your organization)
  • Share files with individuals or groups
  • Lock files for editing to prevent conflicts
  • View files online without having to download
  • Control who can view/edit your files and who can re-share them 
  • View who has downloaded your files and which version they have
  • See how the file has been shared throughout your organization
  • and more... ! 
Available add-ons:
  • Compliance and Governance support 
  • Real-time co-editing of files without downloading 
Here's a demo of the plugins and mobile apps in action:



Enjoy!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

What's New in the April 2015 Release of IBM Connections Social Cloud

View Comments
As we run our final checklist to turn on the new features, I wanted to give you a heads up as to what to expect next week.  I had the opportunity to give a preview of these to the audience at Social Connections, the independent IBM Connections user group, last week in Boston.

The conference was great as usual.  It was completely sold out as usual was great. I had the opportunity to meet with developers (check out this related post) as well as customers/users.  I learned about how they are driving the culture shift and increasing the adoption of Connections within the organization.  So much insight! The next Social Connections has been announced for October 2015 in Stuttgart, Germany (Oktoberfest anyone?)

So on to next week, here's a few things that you can expect:

  • New custom layouts for communities so that you can tailor your communications to your team
  • Drag-n-drop apps between columns in a single step
  • Responsive apps so that they adjust to the right column width
  • Type-ahead search for recently visited content to get back to where you've been faster
  • Access Activities via the mobile device

Here's a sample of a community with apps moved around:


To give you a visual idea of what to expect, check out these couple of slides:



And for those of you who couldn't make it to Social Connections 8, here's the presentation that I delivered:



Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

How To Integrate Your App with IBM Connections Cloud with 2 Lines of Code

View Comments
Last week I was at the IBM Connections user group conference, called Social Connections, in Boston MA.  There, I got the opportunity to meet with many end users as well as developers interested in building apps for IBM Connections.

A particular session that I got great feedback from developers was the one titled Mastering the IBM Connections Developers Experience. Vijay Francis and Paul Bastide took the audience through the options to integrate with IBM Connections Cloud.  One of the samples was how to take an existing app and bring in our navigation components into it in less than 30 seconds!

So imagine you have an app like this:



Now let's take that and add the IBM Connections Cloud navigation to it.  Add a couple of lines of code and boom!


Now, you have an easy and consistent way for users to go back and forth between your app and the main Connections interface. So how did I do this? As easy as 1-2-3:

  1. Add the following before the closing body tag in your web app

    <script src="https://apps.na.collabserv.com/navbar/banner/partner/navBar?oneui=3" type="text/javascript"></script>
  2. Add the following to the head tag

    <link href="http://apps.na.collabserv.com/theming/theme/css/3" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css"></link>
  3. Add the following CSS classes to your opening body tag

    class="lotusui30 lotusui30_body lotusui30_fonts scloud3"
And if you look at the steps above, basically you are using 2 lines of code to do the integration. Easy!

For more information check out these links: