Thursday, October 28, 2010

Add it to your calendar: Quickr 8.5 for Domino Webcast on November 11

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On November 11, the Lotus Greenhouse is going to host a webcast with Miki Banatwala, our Chief Programmer of IBM Quickr for Domino.


Miki had previously shared a document describing what's new in IBM Lotus Quickr for Domino 8.5. This will be a great opportunity for you to hear directly from him. Come hear what's new and see this product in action!

Here are the details for the webcast:

See you there!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

How To Add Twitter and Facebook Like Buttons to a Domino Blog

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I recently helped a colleague add the Twitter buttons and the Facebook Like buttons to their Domino blog. I'm sharing the instructions here so other people can leverage it.

  1. With your Notes client, open your blog database (e.g. edbrill.nsf)
  2. Go to Advanced
  3. Go to HTML Templates -> Item Templates -> Default Item
  4. Look for

    <div class="entrybody">

  5. In between those lines add the following code ( make sure you update the two URLs ):

    <div style="float: right; width: 60px;">
    <div style="margin: 0;" >
    <a href=""
    <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>
    <div style="padding: 3px;">
    <iframe frameborder="0" scrolling="no"
    style="border: medium none;
    overflow: hidden;
    width: 60px;
    height: 65px;"

  6. Save
  7. Go to HTML Templates - Page Templates - Document
  8. Again, look for:

    <div class="entrybody">

  9. In between those lines add the following code (this is to make buttons appear on individual pages and again make sure to update the URL's below) :

    <div style="float: right; width: 60px;">
    <div style="margin: 0;" >
    <a href=""
    <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script>
    <div style="padding: 3px;">
    <iframe frameborder="0" scrolling="no"
    style="border: medium none;
    overflow: hidden;
    width: 60px;
    height: 65px;"

  10. Save
  11. Go to HTML Templates - Block Templates - HTMLTop
  12. Look for this line:


  13. Replace it with this line (this is so that when you use the FB like button it display better.. It also helps with Google Search Engine Optimization):

    <title><$DXTitle$> - <$DXSubject$></title>

  14. In that same file, look for <body>
  15. Immediately, after that line, add this:

    <script language="javascript">
    var toCompare = "<$DXTitle$> - ";
    toCompare += "<";
    toCompare += "$";
    toCompare += "D";
    toCompare += "X";
    toCompare += "S";
    toCompare += "u";
    toCompare += "b";
    toCompare += "j";
    toCompare += "e";
    toCompare += "c";
    toCompare += "t";
    toCompare += "$";
    toCompare += ">";

    if (document.title == toCompare) {
    document.title = "<$DXTitle$>";

  16. Save


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Business Analytics & Insights Go Social Thanks to Cognos 10

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IBM is making everything go social these days. Yesterday, IBM released and demoed Cognos 10 to a huge audience at the Information On Demand Conference in Las Vegas.

One of the big announcements of Cognos 10 is that it is now bundled and integrated out of the box with the leading Enterprise 2.0 platform: IBM Connections. That's right, the entire Lotus Connections suite is included for free with Cognos 10! This was received by great fanfare as evidenced in the Twitter stream:

SOakleyIBM: Here's a shot of the new Lotus Connections collaboration integration. Very cool. #baforum #iodgc #cognos10

pjtec: Fully integrated Lotus Connections out of the box with Cognos 10. What about non-Lotus social platforms? #cognos10 #iodgc

sharkpac: IBM #Cognos10 launch. Ships with Lotus Connections. The collaboration capabilities look VERY interesting.

jocoutuer: #iodgc #cognos10 wisdom prevails! Reuse The Lotus connections capabilities for bi groupware mode collaboration and search...

MCsomerville: Ok..this Lotus connections in #Cognos10 is exciting. Also, annotations at a cell level

dmenningervr: Ashe: Bsuiness #analytics has become a team game; will ship Lotus Connections in the #COGNOS10 box #IODGC #BAFORUM one of my faves

rwang0: Cognos10 ships w/ #lotus #connections out of the box #cognos10 #ibm #iodgc #analytics

rwang0: MyPOV: My favorite features are the BI workspaces and collaboration features with Lotus Connections #cognos10 #ibm #iodgc #analytics

Greg_Tydak: #Cognos10 - Social media intehration, seamless upgrade, up to 80% improvement in performance (for #TM1) AND iPad functionality? Sweet.

chrisprocter: Liking the collaborative/social aspects of #cognos10!

cedricdevroey: The team is impressed by the new social features in #cognos10 @Numius

As you'll see, some people had questions about what this means for non-Lotus shops. In my opinion, I don't think this matters for various reasons: 1) Lotus Connections doesn't run on Domino and does not require any Lotus specific technology at all; and 2) Lotus Connections integrates completely into the Microsoft stack. The story has also been picked up by various media channels:

Additionally, you can leverage Cognos' awesome reporting tools to visualize and measure the adoption of Lotus Connections within your enterprise. Here are some sample reports that my co-worker George Brichacek did:

Here's a quick movie-trailer-style video of the Cognos 10 release to pump you up.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Need Your Help: Prioritize Key Focus Areas for Lotus Connections

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Happy Friday! With our next release of our super awesome Enterprise 2.0 platform, Lotus Connections, almost out the door, as you can guess we are already planning for next year's big release.

As we plan the release, we would love to have your feedback on which areas we need to focus. The Lotus User Research Team has put together a survey to help us understand which features are important to you and where can we improve the usability of those.

So if you can take 5 minutes before leaving for the weekend, I would appreciate that you complete the survey available here:

The survey will be open until Tuesday 10/26 so hurry hurry.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

IBM Makes Office Productivity Suites Go Social!

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IBM has just released their latest version of Lotus Symphony, their free award-winning office productivity suite built on top of Eclipse and OpenOffice.

And Symphony even becomes social thanks to the free plugins that are available. First, there's a plugin to generate an organizational chart based on the information coming from the Profiles service.

Additionally, if you are using LotusLive Connections, there's a plugin to allow you to easily open, edit, and publish files to/from LotusLive directly from Lotus Symphony.

If you have SharePoint internally, there's a plugin for that as well! Or even better than SharePoint, if you are using Lotus Quickr, there's a plugin that lets you check-in/check-out, edit documents, upload documents, integrates with your ECM, and even works with your established workflow patterns.

Another plugin you might be interested in is the Wiki editor plugin. This plugin allows you to create documents in Lotus Connections and convert them into a Lotus Connections Wiki or Confluence Wiki. Need an offline wiki editor? This is the plugin for you!

If you are using MediaWiki, there's also a plugin for that.

If you are interested in calculating how much money you would save by dumping Microsoft Office and switching to Lotus Symphony, check out the calculator here. And if that's not enough to convince you, you could still download the social plugins from IBM for Microsoft Office.

You are convinced, right? Then go ahead and download this plug-in to batch convert all your Microsoft Office files into OpenOffice format and start enjoying the power of FREE!

Version 3 of Lotus Symphony is available Windows, Mac, SUSE Linux, RedHat, and Ubuntu and can be downloaded from here.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Getting Started with Social Media

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Are you interested in getting your feet wet with Social Media? IBM has created a page solely dedicated to educating businesses on how to get started with social media.

The Getting Started with Social Media page is aimed at IBM Business Partners and provides various guides to help partners better understand how to use this new medium, decide if and how to use it, and how to use key tools to get the most value out of it.

Here's what you will find there:

Because this is targeted for IBM Business Partners, you do need an account with PartnerWorld. So all of you business partners that are reading this, go ahead and download these guides today.

Technorati has also picked this up and it's available here. It's encouraging to see that Technorati is asking other companies to imitate what IBM is doing:

[...] it's great to see companies being more proactive and aggressive with their social media use. Here's hoping other large corporations--and small ones--follow IBM's lead.

The author of the Technorati article, however, is not aware of all the great things that IBM is doing in the social space. Hopefully, he posts a follow up.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Lotus Connections is Even More Integrated into Lotus Notes 8.5.2

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If you listen to anyone talk about how to drive adoption for new Enterprise 2.0 platform, they'll likely say that integration into existing business processes is extremely important. Michael Idinopulos from SocialText, for example, talked about this just 2 weeks ago.

If you've been following me for a while you know that I've been a big advocate of integration and have talked about how easy it is to integrate Lotus Connections into existing apps.

With the new release of Lotus Notes 8.5.2 several weeks ago, there's even more out-of-the-box integration bringing the power of social networks behind the firewall to a familiar interface, your email/collaboration client.

One of my favorite new features, which I accidentally stumbled upon, is the ability to invite someone to my network directly from my email client:

In case you are like me and haven't spotted all the new integration points, Mary Beth Raven summarizes all the new integration points in this blog post. Of course, IBM is all about openness so if you use Microsoft Outlook, don't feel left behind. Simply download this free plugin from the Lotus Connections App Catalog and bring the power of Lotus Connections to your Outlook client.

Monday, October 18, 2010

What's up at the IBM Social Software Research Center?

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The IBM Center for Social Software has a lot to celebrate. As you know, the center turned 2 years old last month ( I wonder if I can relate because of my 2 year old, but I digress). Last week, the center kicked off their Fall Speaker series by hosting Craig Watkins (@scraigwatkins). And looking at the back channel chatter, it looks like it was a total success.

The center has been busy as I mentioned earlier. This year alone they have published 10 papers on topics such as file sharing, microblogging, a blog muse, and detecting closeness in social networking sites. If you haven't yet, go ahead and take a look at what's available.

And the projects they are working on? Simply fascinating! One of these projects is called Social Lens and it was presented to bloggers recently and it was very well received. Paul Gillin not only shares his story of what he saw but he also recorded several video clips and compiled them into one. I'll let the video do the talking:

IBM Research Collaboration Lab Demonstration Night Oct. 6, 2010 from Paul Gillin on Vimeo.

MIT's Technology Review also was there (of course since they are only half a mile down the street from the IBM Center for Social Software). You can see MIT's take on IBM Social Software here which is also worth reading. It provides more details into what Social Lens is and even Google's take on it.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Metrics, metrics, and more metrics for Lotus Connections

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If you are reading this, then I need you! I need your feedback on what kind of metrics you need (or you've been asked to provide) for Lotus Connections, especially around Communities.

LC2.5-Communities-Metrics(metrics in Communities in 2.5)

Last year, I showed you some of the sample reports generated by Lotus Connections 2.5. For those of you who have Lotus Mashups, you probably already know how to create custom reports for Lotus Connections. Perhaps you are already capturing some analytics in Lotus Connections using Google Analytics.

As our release of Lotus Connections next prepares to go out the door soon, we are already planning on what Lotus Connections is going to look like in 2011. Therefore, we would love to have your feedback and incorporate early in the planning process.

With that said, please head on to this blog entry and leave your feedback there. Hope to hear from a lot of you.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

How To Embed MP3 in IBM Connections Wiki/Blog

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Recently, I got a question from a colleague wondering how to embed a podcast into a Lotus Connections Blog (or Wiki for that matter). The idea is that readers can listen to the podcast w/out having to download it first to the desktop.

It occurred to me that this may be something that others are wondering about how to do as well. Therefore, I've decided to share the instructions with you.

Updated 29/Jul/2013: This depended on Google Reader which is now sunset.

Here's how you do it:
  1. Upload the MP3 file to IBM Connections
  2. Go to the Blog / Wiki you are editing
  3. Switch over to the HTML view
  4. Paste the following code where you would like to embed the MP3/podcast

    <iframe frameborder="0" height="53" src="" width="285"></iframe>

  5. To get the URL of the file, right-click on the 'Download now' link and select Copy Shortcut or Copy Link and then replace it where it says: MP3_FILE_URL.
  6. Save the Blog / Wiki
You'll notice that these instructions are pretty similar to what's found here. I used that blog entry and adapted the instructions for IBM Connections, but those instructions pretty much work for any blog/wiki system.

In fact, I've embedded my recent SocialBizUG podcast here:

If you wan to customize the player, go to and follow the instructions.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

How To Create an iPhone Application for Lotus Connections

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As a gift for Columbus Day, on Friday IBM made available an article named: Developing a social networking iPhone application based on IBM Lotus Connections 2.5.

You may remember that last month I told you about IBM's first native iPhone app for Lotus Connections. The developers of that application, Nick Poore and Amy Dewar, documented their work.

The article starts with an introduction of the Lotus Connections APIs which are based on Atom. This means that all you need to know is how to send XML over HTTP; very simple.

Next, the article shows you how to use the iPhone SDK to create the first part of the app: a view into the most recent blog entries.

The article includes all the sample code you need to get a functional app, and it even includes a sample iPhone app you can download and start your development from there.

I can't wait to see what kind of applications developers are now going to create. If you do one, let me know.

To download the sample application and read the article, click here.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Lotus Connections Can Increase Your Stock Price

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Last week IBM reached it's all-time high (and today we are breaking new records). Over the weekend I wondered how IBM and Microsoft compare as we are often pitted against each other in the Enterprise 2.0 space. Now I wanted to compare how the two companies have fared in the past years.

I'm assuming that Microsoft is using Sharepoint internally, although I couldn't find any information on it. I know, of course, for a fact that IBM is using Lotus Connections internally. But assuming Microsoft does use Sharepoint internally as their Enterprise 2.0 platform, can we look at the stock price of both companies and see what's better? I thought it would be an interesting exercise.

So I headed over to CNNMoney to get a comparative stock price chart and annotated it to approximate the releases of Lotus Connections (originally out in 2007) and Sharepoint. I had to approximate since the chart wasn't specific on the timeframes (ie. months are hard to determine).

Here's the result:

Now you may be wondering why I didn't start in 2007. CNNMoney only gave me an option for 3 year and 5 year. The 5 year comparison (starting from late 2006) is even more favorable towards IBM, putting IBM at almost up 60% while Microsoft is down 20% for the same time period!

I'm just saying...

Friday, October 8, 2010

Is Your Company Collaborating Successfully?

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For those of you lucky enough to be in Boston next week, well, I'm jealous. There are two great events that I wanted to bring to your attention and that you should go to.

First, as I mentioned recently, next Monday the IBM Center of Social Software kicks off its Fall 2010 Speaker Series with Craig Watkins. To RSVP and see more details, click here.

Second, on Friday October 15th, 2010, we are hosting an exclusive lunch at the Capital Grille. At the lunch we'll have two companies that are using social software behind the firewall to create a hyper-comptetive, interconnected world, which today is top of mind for Human Resources & Marketing leaders.

  1. Carmen Duarte, VP Marketing and Communications from OneBeacon Insurance
  2. Melissa Shore, VP Internal Branding and Communications from Staples

Joining them will be Michael Fontaine who is the Director of Compensation & Global Recognition at IBM. These executives will share what they are doing to improve employee communication & engagement, maximize corporate awareness, and create collaborative work environments that facilitate teaming and sharing inside and outside the enterprise.

This forum will encourage dialogue in support of an optimally productive experience. Networking with peer thought leaders and executives from organizations facing similar challenges will be an additional benefit of attending.

Date: Friday, October 15th, 2010

Time: 11:30am

Location: Capital Grille 10 Wayside Road Burlington, MA 01803

Please RSVP by leaving a comment below or by reaching out to me.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Watch out! China & Taiwan are all about Enterprise 2.0

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Lately, I've been hearing a lot about Enterprise 2.0 deployments in the United States, Canada, and Europe. However, I've heard very little as to what's going on in Asia.

I'm not sure how many of you have noticed, but IBM has a section in the product page of Connections where they highlight success stories. If you visit the link, you'll notice that the success stories are dominated by companies from Asia! I figured I would highlight 3 of those success stories here:

  1. Chinese Deaf Association - This government agency was established in 1995 and it serves 200,000 deaf or hearing-impaired citizens in Taipei. Before implementing this platform, only 23,000 deaf or hearing-impaired citizens could be served and they had to book translation services 5 days in advance. Now, they can get access to interpreters via instant messaging and video chat. They are using Lotus Connections to build the first-ever community to connect the local deaf community with basic information about daily news, healthcare, legal services, jobs, all delivered via video clips.

  2. China Telecommunications Corporation - China Telecom is the largest fixed-line service and 3rd largest mobile telecom provider in China. After recently acquiring a new 3G license, they wanted to set up a platform to leverage its employee base and drive innovation. Using Lotus Connections, they created a unified innovation process which is also open to business partners and customers. The first idea was posted "a mere 10 minutes after launch".

  3. Digital China - Digital China is an IT services provider in China providing solutions to clients ranging from consumers to large industry firms. Digital China wanted to improve its agility and collaboration capabilities. Leveraging Lotus Connections, Digital China created an integrated services oriented architecture (SOA) platform to offer multiple self-help collaboration services reducing help desk support costs.

So what do you think? Is Enterprise 2.0 now a world phenomenon or are we still a decade away like Forbes suggests?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

IBM's Use of Social Media Inside the Firewall

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So Friday, was a busy day for sure. On Monday, I told you how I had to be up at 7am to record episode 20 of the This Week In Lotus podcast. At lunch time, I headed over to the El Conquistador resort to speak at a panel on Internal Communications for the Association of Professional Public Relations of Puerto Rico.

The panel was 1 hour long and I only had 15 minutes to talk about how IBM is using social media inside of the firewall. The idea was that the other speaker would get another 15 minutes and then we would use the other 30 minutes to field questions from the public and/or the moderator.

Since I only had 15 minutes, I created this quick presentation which of course doesn't do justice to all the great things that IBM is doing, but should serve as a teaser.

I volunteered to go first and noticed a lot of people taking notes (and almost no one live tweeting). After my 15 minutes were up, I sat down and anxiously waited for the Q&A part of the panel. However, the other speaker stood up for 55 minutes.

Because we were limited on time, we only had a chance to answer 1 question from the public and it was about guidelines. The other speaker mentioned that his company doesn't have a social media policy.

I, of course, mentioned that IBM has a set of Social Media Guidelines and that they are available for others to model after it. In fact, Mashable recommends that you create your social media guidelines by copying those from IBM. And it turns out that the keynote speaker for the conference was Deirdre Breakenridge who is a big fan of IBM's work and even mentioned it while she was here.

The moderator was also able to get one question in and it was related to how IBM takes action when an employee does something wrong like accidentally publish confidential information. This is a common "fear" as highlighted in the book The New Social Learning (which I need to dedicate a full blog post to). I spoke about how our community mostly self-polices each other and that there are people out there watching out just in case and we have a formal structure to take action in case something happens (which I won't go into detail here). I also mentioned the advice from the book, "educate people on how to use [the tools] effectively for work".

So I know it's a short presentation, but I promised to post it here for others to reference it later on.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

What's the Business Value of Social Software?

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If you are looking at ideas on how to improve the efficiency of your organization, division, or department, then I have a webcast just for you. Tomorrow, a set of 3 panelists from IBM will be addressing CIOs and Line of Business owners with the goal of getting everyone to leave with a new approach on how social software can deliver real business value.

Here's the details for tomorrow's webcast.

Date: October 6, 2010
Time: 11 am ET
Duration: 60 minutes

IBM Panelists:
Randy Frink
Sales & Distribution, Software Sales

Louis Richardson
Software Group, Worldwide Sales

Martha Mealy
Market Segment Manager - Social Software, Mashup Center

Additionally, attendees will get a free copy of a whitepaper: "Web 2.0 @ work: How CIOs can Help Drive Business Returns by Improving Organizationally". To register for the webcast tomorrow, click here.


Skype, Tungle, & Mac application sharing comes to the IBM Cloud Web Meetings

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Today, IBM announced a long list of updates to its collaboration cloud offering. I tried to count all the new features, but there are simply too much to count them manually. A rough estimate comes to about 150 new features!

One of the things that's very attractive of the new updates is its seamless integration between mail and other collaborative services, whereas other vendors force you to go from module to module.

Additionally, I'm really excited about the integration with Tungle. If you haven't signed up to Tungle, you should do it today. It simplifies the process of scheduling meetings with people outside of your company (which probably means that you don't have access to their calendar availability). Tungle fixes this and it's now directly integrated within LotusLive so you can easily schedule meetings with your LotusLive contacts.

Moreover, the Communities component of Lotus Connections is now part of LotusLive which has been a popular customer request. Other changes within Lotus Connections include the ability to tag people and add custom profile fields.

Lastly, but not least, Mac users rejoice: application sharing is now available for Mac users. This is in addition to the nifty free web meeting application for iPhone/iPad.

Here's a video that walks you through the new features:

To view the video in full screen, go here. Don't have a LotusLive account? Start a free trial today.


Monday, October 4, 2010

It's Podcast Season!

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Two weeks ago I told you about a podcast I'd recorded with my colleague Sacha Chua. This time I got to participate in the This Week In Lotus podcast. As you may remember, I talked about this podcast several weeks ago because they were discussing the IDC report where IBM is named the Market Leader in Enterprise 2.0 Platforms.

So, last week Stuart McIntyre, one of the show's hosts, invited me to join the podcast. That meant that last Friday I had to be up and ready by 7am. That was pretty easy, however, given I have a 2.5 year old and a 2 month old who are ready to go and have fun by 5am.

In this episode, we get a chance to talk about:

Make sure you catch the tips section, I think there's a couple of things there you'll like.

To listen to this episode, click here or subscribe via iTunes.