Friday, October 10, 2008

How to integrate Lotus Connections and Facebook in less than 1 minute

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200810101325.jpgAs a techie and developer, one of the things that I really appreciate about Lotus Connections, is its ease of use and how fast someone can extend it.

Case in point, a customer recently asked me to add a Facebook widget to the Lotus Connections Home page. I knew there were several Google Gadgets out there for Facebook. Therefore, I followed the instructions on how to run a Google Gadget as a widget in Lotus Connections and created my own Facebook iWidget. Total work effort? 10 minutes.

iWidgets are powerful

Now, because Lotus Connections widgets can be hosted anywhere, I uploaded the widget to my domain. Since the widget has already been "developed" and "deployed", all you have to do is add it to your Connections' Home Page. To use the widget in your Lotus Connections deployment, simply add this widget:

This process literally takes 1 minute and is documented here.

Re-use is such a beautiful thing

Why reinvent the wheel? Why code something that already exists? While other vendors may have an extensible home page where you can add widgets, they force you to code the widget from scratch! You don't have to! Lotus Connections gives you the power to deploy any of the ~45,000 Google Gadgets, that somebody already coded for you!

Let me summarize: 10-15 minutes to wrap a Google Gadget into an iWidget. 1 more minute to deploy that iWidget into the home page. Total effort: ~16 minutes. No coding. No Java. No JSPs. No APIs to learn.Simply 1 XML with 2 lines of code and 1 HTML with 1 line of code.

A true social networking home page is born

By deploying existing gadgets into the home page, you are creating a true social home page. One that provides not only the recent updates from someone's internal social network, but also one that provides the most recent updates for someone's external social network! Now imagine what that's going to do to your adoption rates!! That's right, they are going to skyrocket!

Is Facebook not your favorite external social provider? You don't have 15 minutes to create the iWidget wrapper for the Google Gadgets?

No worries! All you really need is 1 minute! I have wrapped the following Google Gadgets into iWidgets for Lotus Connections:

updated 13/Apr/2009: Other widgets you may be interested on:


Seeing is believing

Wait, what's that? You still don't believe me that it takes less than 1 minute? Let me show you!! Click here to see a full-screen demo!

What else would you like to see? Let me know and I can expand this Lotus Connections iWidget Catalog!

P.S. The devWorks article is a bit long, but the core of the article is this section. If you follow the instructions in that section, you can get your own Google Gadget up-and-running in 10-15 mins.

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