Thursday, April 23, 2015

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

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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:


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

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

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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="" type="text/javascript"></script>
  2. Add the following to the head tag

    <link href="" 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:

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Social Connections VIII is coming to Boston -- Register Today!

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Social Connections, the IBM Connections user group, will have their 8th event this April 16-17th and this time it's coming to the US for the first time in beautiful Boston.

With a focus on IBM Connections and Social Business, this is a first-class event for the user community. If you are working with IBM Connections, I'd strongly recommend that you make every effort to attend!

In fact, last year, I had the opportunity to attend the conference in Prague and it was a fantastic experience. It's invaluable when I have the a chance to talk directly to customers, users, partners, and developers to gather feedback and share what we are doing with the portfolio.

The agenda for the event was announced last week and you can get all the details here.

Here's a video that the team put together after the event in Prague last year:

Now that you've watched the video and taken a look at the agenda, the next step is to register! Register for the next event and check out the full list of speakers!

Oh and don't forget to follow the team on Twitter and like their page on Facebook to keep up with all the news about the event.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Updated Desktop Plug-Ins Available Today and New Features Coming to IBM Connections Cloud Next Week

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As mentioned in a previous entry, we released a File Sync and Share only offering earlier this week. Today, I have some good news.  Today we have released the latest version of our desktop plugins for Mac and Windows in prep for the new feature that will start appearing in IBM Connections Cloud next week.

This month's release continues to focus on our file sharing and sync capabilities. This release also introduces new features to help teams better organize their communications. Here's a sampling of the new features:
  • Team sites and communications
    • Rename apps (e.g. rename Wikis to Documentation)
  • File sharing and sync
    • Drag-n-drop target to upload files
    • Add multiple files to sync at once
    • Mac plug-in: ability to specify file extensions to ignore, enable beta features (if you like living on the edge!), and turn on/off logging for troubleshooting purposes
    • Federated authentication support (SAML) for Mac/Windows (cloud only)
  • Mobile
    • IBM Docs support in iOS (view and co-edit documents). Watch out for an update to the app
    • Citrix support for iOS and Android
    • MobileIron support for Android.
  • Rich text editor
    • Ability to sort data in tables in the rich text editor
    • Permament Pen - those of you used to Verse or IBM Notes will recognize this feature. This allows you to set a custom style so that when you revise content (e.g. wikis) all your markup is done in a specific color/font/style
As mentioned above, you can now sort the data in tables within the rich text editor as you can see below:

I've also created a presentation that shows the new features in this release:

For more details on what's new in the March 2015 release, check out the documentation here.

If you've missed what we've released in previous months, check out the history of new features here.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

IBM Creates File Sharing and Sync only offering and it's available today

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Fresh off the presses! The IBM Connections Files cloud offering is now available in our cloud.  If you are already an IBM Connections customer there's nothing for you to do. However, if you've been thinking about starting with IBM Connections, this might be a good place to start as you get just the core file sharing and sync component of IBM Connections and then upgrade to full the IBM Connections suite as your team needs more capabilities.

IBM Connections Files Cloud is a new standalone cloud service that combines the ability to share files with internal and external users with the ability to synchronize users' files across their own devices. Small to medium businesses, line-of-business departments, or corporate IT can sign up easily and start using the service immediately. The familiar browser interface, desktop clients, and mobile applications provide simple ways to get to the most important files and keep them in sync with other users and devices. Each user gets 1TB of space and administrators can always get more as needed.

Check out Ovum's report on why IBM Connections file sync and share is a leader in this space.

IBM Connections Files on Cloud empowers organizations to increase productivity, make speedier business decisions and enhance innovation:

  1. One place for enterprise file storage, sharing, and syncing plus social – find experts, see profiles, post status updates, find content with tags and more.
  2. Securely access files anytime, anywhere, on any device.  Create, share, find, store, review, and even edit online and offline, all in a security rich environment, designed to meet IT needs
  3. Simple collaboration inside and outside your organization. Easily and instantaneously share files with colleagues, partners, clients and suppliers.
  4. Robust access control.  You decide who can read and edit files with role level access control.  The included Profiles capabilities allow you to find and connect with colleagues via their business card and contact information.
  5. More value for your money. You get market leading file sync and sharing capabilities PLUS the benefits of key social collaboration capabilities at a lower price than many other vendors.

Here's a demo I did recently that shows the IBM Connections file sync capabilities on a Mac:

To start a free trial, go to