Good morning fellow spherians, Lotus enthusiasts, social geeks, and everyone else who is here. For those not here in body, the energy in the room is high and you are here with us in spirit. The theme is Get Social. Do Business.
As people pour into the Dolphin Hemisphere, we are being greeted with stats that IBM has collected related to social marketing, or social behaviors. Apparently, if you are not married, you could join the ranks of the 1 in 8 couples who meet via a social network. (Who knew??)
The stage has a spinning sphere of drums, revolving table of drums, guitar… the band is cool as hell. Rockin’ LS11 at 8 am. Clear out the cobwebs, if you had any! That has got to be the largest harp I have ever seen! That is how to start a session!
Alistair just took the stage. After a shout out to GM about their Volt (which sports an impressive amount of technology), he moved on to thank the collection of college students who are attending thanks to Group.
The special guest this year is… Kevin Spacey! I had no idea he was so good at “Bill Clinton”. Hilarious! Kevin attributes his career and success to those who took chance and risk on him, the movies he was a part of, and all projects he has done. With beginnings in theater and stage, he ultimately decided in 1992 to break into film. After a twelve year stint in film, he took over the role of artistic director at the Old Vic. Success he found, raised the security and protection required. This created a sense of disconnection from young talent. This bothered Kevin, and he turned to the internet. He created the site (triggerstreet.com) to give film makers and writers a community and outlet for finding these immerging talents. Started in 2002, this was one of the first social networks created in the internet. This is his way to give back, give the opportunities he had to others to break into this rewarding business. He gave a wonderful bit of wisdom… “If you have been successful in life, it is our job to send the elevator back down.” It is our duty to reach back and help those desiring to grow and achieve what you have done. After relating the story of how he came to “The Social Network”, relayed the successes of the movie, and pointed out just how dramatic the real story is behind the film is. After a comedic interlude… we were left with a statement of inspiration and hammered the point of being open, listening, and being social.
Alistair Rennie returned to the stage, and discussed the shift in how companies drive value with collaboration and socialization. Reminding us that we (the Lotus community) are positioned perfectly to take this immerging market by storm. There was a challenge to us to be leaders of our companies as the social revolution reaches our individual companies. We have to show business with business results just how effective the social business can be. The long list of references and underscored successes of the social revolution reached a point of obvious value in that social businesses have the ability to always be on, available, and listening to the world around them. This gives them the ability to be nimble and successful beyond their competitors. The earlier adopters are making this trend obvious. Alistair continued to point out that every emerging technology is often extremely underestimated. As we lead this revolution in business, we need to remind the naysayers of this.
Business is about people. Start with the results businesses need and work backwards to the systems they need to achieve that. He makes a statement of commitment to open standards as the development of these social platforms continue to grow. Ignoring open standards ignores the crux of being an open company in the first place. Elegance and simplicity are the over-arching themes behind the drive to make these platforms extensible and standards based.
Happy 100th Birthday, IBM!
He brought out Jim Balsillie of RIM. He discussed the PlayBook. Highlighted the performance, rich web experience, and security of the platform. After a demo video, they explored the rich website a bit deeper. Complete flash support in the browser on the PlayBook. It sounds like their message is “You don’t need an app for that!”. The plan behind the PlayBook was to bring standard and open technologies to a browser on a tablet device. The native browser made light work of Connections and the Blackberry Bridge feature directly connects the PlayBook to your Blackberry handheld via secure bluetooth for mail/pim sync. In May at Blackberry world, RIM will promote the top 25 apps submitted by Lotus developers (IBM affiliates) and give them a PlayBook/press release/ and possibly more.
Jeff Schick took the stage next, after a video about better work experiences built on social tools. He brought out a panel of leaders from BASF, KBC, CSC, and AT&T to discuss taking their organizations social. They relayed their individual experiences and successes with their social business models.
After the panel, Sandy Carter relayed IBM’s success as a social business. They utilize social tools internally, and have for years, with the intention of being a mentor to other companies endeavoring to be social them selves. A great part of her message was to just get started. Emerging social technology is evolving so rapidly, you can not necessarily wait for the formal 5yr plan. Jump in and get started.
Larry Bowden then welcomed another panel of speakers to the stage. They discussed the exceptional web experience. Australian Football League, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, and RBC were on the panel discussing their focused web efforts to change their web experiences for their customers/stake holders/fans. They each relayed the importance of social tools, mobile experience, and personalization as key elements of transforming their web experiences to leading status.
Finally!!! DEMO TIME!
Notes Next will bring activity stream into the dashboard, LotusLive capabilities, and Connections Files into the sidebar. Social media interaction will be directly inline. Embedded experience with analytics and social media. We finally will have a true shared calendar experience in Notes Next.
Notes Traveler will have a widget based custom home page. And a plug for BES Express was dropped into the demos. Traveler Next also bring a mobile view into the users activity streams just like the client and works to bring a more embedded experience with media. xPages will be extended to support mobile devices as well.
Plug for Plantronics bluetooth head set with embedded Sametime awareness updater based on the proximity sensing technology in the headset.
Notes/Domino Next beta will be available in the second half of this year. They will also make it available on LotusLive. The Social Business Toolkit is being updated to support these new features and embedded capabilities of the Notes Next features and the Activity Stream.
Connections 3.0 brings wonderful analytics to the table. The addition of analytics brings more relevant suggestions to users. Communities will see the addition of idea blogs and media sharing for video and pictures. This is on top of the sub-community functionality we have today. Connections Profiles has more functionality in the directory searching capability with name type ahead and the analytics suggested connections makes for a very mature user experience.
Sametime Next will bring a zero client A/V experience to the web meeting experience. It will also extend the mobile experience and make it more complete. YYYAAAYYY!!!
Near the end, it was announced that IBM is strategically intending to bring Connections integration into Microsoft Exchange and
Thank you to everyone and all of their hard work that went into the OGS. It was a good way to kick off the day.