Just a quick reminder to our Sametime audience. As we blogged about a month ago, our friends over at Wainhouse Research are still soliciting responses to their 2010 Unified Communications and Collaboration End User Survey. Your responses will help develop a clearer understanding of the unified communications marketplace. This survey should take 5 - 8 minutes to complete! And as an added bonus for your time, Wainhouse will select ten respondents to win a $50 Amazon.com gift certificate. Hurry: the survey closes July 30!
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Jacques Pavlenyi 1000002W2A firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  ucoms survey wainhouse business ucc uc research 1,288 Visits
I've been working with a lot of people from Denmark lately and I must say it's been quite a rewarding experience. I don't know whether it has to do with the fact that Denmark is one of the happiest places on Earth (it was number one last year) and that state of mind gets to you when you talk to Danish people over Sametime Unified Telephony (it only happens over SUT and TCSPI adapters, by the way) or because we're lucky enough to be working with great business partners hailing from the land of Mr. Andersen.
Convergens A/S is one of those partners. I've been working with them in building a reference for Collaboration Agenda to highlight their CitizenCasePortal, an integrated solution for municipal case workers that features Sametime, WebSphere Portal, Domino and Notes.
Convergens built the solution for a municipality in Denmark to help case workers improve accuracy and delivery of the various services the municipality offers its citizens.
The main selling point of the solution is to, first, present a unified picture of a citizen's case history along with access to the case workers that participated in building that history and, secondly, to give ready access to those case workers in real time.
The solution pattern proves, once again, that communication is only useful in-context. This is a line-of-business application used by task workers that has improved case processing time in about 90% when compared to the time it took a case worker to gather all the information and build case histories from scratch--every time.
The solution has been in production for about two months now and it's already proving to be one of the smartest decisions the customer has ever made, according to their CIO. I could not agree more.
About a week ago I wrote a post on this blog in which I asked our readers two questions:
I asked that any responses to these two questions be posted in the form of comments on the corresponding post. So far, I see 58 people have seen the post but no comments have been recorded.
If you have an opinion but would rather not comment on this blog please feel free to send me email. My email address is my first-name initial (m) followed by my last name (machado)--no space in between--at "us" dot "ibm" dot "com".
I'm really interested in your opinion and any feedback on the subject will be greatly appreciated.
Jacques Pavlenyi 1000002W2A email@example.com Tags:  partners business-partner-tuesdays uc videos 1 Comment 1,061 Visits
As I mentioned in a previous post, we've been working with AwesomeBobcatVideos to include Unified Communications videos in her ongoing series of short videos that cover Enterprise Collaboration as well as other topics.
The third video that I worked with her on as part of this series was just recently posted. Here I talk briefly about why Business Partners are so important to the IBM strategy for unified communications and collaboration. Take a look at the video on YouTube here.
Marlon Machado 100000PEST firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  strategy web-browser expeditor cloud cebp 1,045 Visits
Today instead of giving you something to make you smile (or just roll your eyes) I would like to, instead, ask you, dear readers, a couple of questions.
I'm interested in your opinion because, first of all, I'm very curious about the make-up of the readership of this blog and I hope your feedback will give me a better idea of who actually reads this stuff. Secondly, because I think these are fair questions to ask.
The only thing I can promise you to do with your feedback is to internalize it and use it to enrich the awareness I rely on to nurture my decision making. If you feel so inclined as to indulging me with your feedback please feel free to comment on this post.
The first question I'd like to ask is: What's your take on the direction we're setting for the Sametime platform vis-a-vis CEBP? If you recall, our take on CEBP basically says that CEBP is about collaboration facilitated and empowered by unified communications. Moreover, we're saying that, to be effective, CEBP must be intimately linked to business process management (BPM). We call the whole thing BPM + UC² = CEBP and the BPM world looks at it as "Social BPM" (see this post for more on the philosophical underpinnings of this rationale).
My second question is: Do you see things such as CEBP and Cloud being delivered exclusively through the Web browser? The reason I'm asking is because we're seeing the Web browser as the easiest way to implement many of the CEBP scenarios we're working on. We're working with the WebSphere Portal team in building templates for industry use cases in banking, retail and insurance and a few work streams we're pursuing with the IBM BPM team and a few select business partners are also centered around Web browser interfaces. I'm also noticing the emergence of an unwritten assumption that everything coming from the Cloud must be delivered through the Web browser.
I don't think this should be the case because not all applications are suited for the browser--especially in situations involving task workers. I happen to believe the idea of heterogeneous mashups--the kinds of applications you build using Lotus Expeditor and, by extension, the Sametime Connect client--is also a viable proposition for both, CEBP and Cloud alongside the Web browser particularly for task workers.
I'm looking forward to hearing your opinion about these two issues.
Have a good weekend, everyone.
Today my friend Art Rosenberg wrote an interesting post titled "Short Messaging Service (SMS) winning the mobility battle?" on the UC Strategies blog that, when you see the numbers, really puts things in perspective when it comes to considering the effectiveness of SMS as a communication tool. As it usually happens, the success of SMS stems from its simplicity: it's low-bandwidth, it doesn't require specialized equipment and it just works. Because of its simplicity, SMS can be used as a communication channel but also as an interface to applications in CEBP scenarios. To me, this is where its true potential resides.
In case you didn't know, there's a way to interact with mobile phones via SMS from Sametime. Our friends at Red Oxygen, a company based in Austin, Texas, have developed the functionality that allows a Sametime user to send and receive SMS from a mobile phone into Sametime and vice versa. Red Oxygen provides the functionality as a cloud service and, to a Sametime user, it looks as if he or she were chatting with another Sametime user when, in reality, he or she would be chatting with a bot that does the brokering between the Sametime community server and the mobile phone. This is what it looks like:
Pretty cool, huh? Never mind the Flintstones.
Marlon Machado 100000PEST email@example.com Tags:  uc2 collaboration-agenda collaboration uc 1,213 Visits
UC² is about more than voice; more than UC. It's far more valuable than adding voice to everything and it's far more profound than debating whether to phase out their PBXs. It's more than selling people phones and telephony hardware and it's certainly more than selling them Windows licenses. Our competitors offer UC. We offer UC². There, I said it.
Having that out of the way, let me tell you why I'm starting this post with a rant.
I just came across a nice example of what I've been saying since I got here:
InformationWeek has just published an article about SPACE (Smart Place to Accelerate Community of Excellence) at Berlitz International. SPACE is a solution based on Sametime, Lotus Connections, WebSphere Portal Server and Tivoli Identity Manager that Berlitz is deploying to serve over 10,000 employees across 550 language centers in 70 countries. The solution is being used to communicate, to collaborate, to find expertise, to capture and share knowledge; all that.
I know it sounds like copy-and-paste from our marketing material but it's actually true. This is our message to the world.
If you're interested in reading the article you can find it here.
Marlon Machado 100000PEST firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  friday-funnies lotusphere-2010 humor lotusphere 1,052 Visits
I just had to. It's way too funny.
It is with mixed emotions that I'm announcing that today is Bruce Morse's last day with IBM. After 32 years, he's decided that it's time to pursue other challenges and adventures in life. Most of you know that Bruce has led our Unified Communications & Collaboration segment for the past 4 years. But in his 3 decades with IBM he also
The entire UC2 team wishes him all the best and his leadership will be missed.
As for Sametime, the rest of the team remains intact and our focus unchanged. I had hoped to be able to announce Bruce's successor at the same time as his retirement, but that is still in the works. I'll let you know as soon as I am able.