Lotus App Catalog is iWildfire, a new iOS app for IBM Connections. Built by ISW, an IBM Business Partner based in Australia, iWildfire provides yet another option for iPhone and iPad users to access IBM Connections while on the go.We are always interested in highlighting what our partners are doing in terms of building applications. One of the apps that has recently been added to the
Check out what Adam Brown from ISW had to say about why the build iWildfire:
First, tell us what does ISW do?
ISW is an Australian based IBM Premier Partner. We focus on IBM technologies and are certified and delivering solutions across the spectrum of IBM software including IBM Collaboration Solutions (Lotus), Websphere, Tivoli, Rational, Business Analytics, and Information Management. ISW also delivers IBM infrastructure solutions. This focus across IBM enables ISW to offer a unique value proposition to our clients ensuring that we can deliver on complex solutions across the IBM portfolio.
What drove you to create iWildfire?
iWildfire really started with the development of Wildfire (http://wildfire.OpenNTF.org) about two years ago. Wildfire is a Notes 8.5 sidebar plugging that enables you to update your status and aggregate activity streams across a wide range of social networks. ISW was awarded the Open Source Solution award at Lotusphere 2011 which really encouraged us to keep going. Second to that ISW is the leading partner in Australia for IBM Connections and we have been doing a significant amount of work helping clients implement Connections and working with them to tightly integrate Connections with their environments using the Connections API. So we decided that one way to demonstrate the capabilities of the API was to build an App that took advantage of the API fully.
Most of all though we are always trying to think of innovative ways to add value around IBM software and we thought that building a native iOS App for IBM Connections would be great fun.
Great, so why did you decide to create a mobile application for IBM Connections?
We use Connections extensively in our business and it has become integral to how we work and collaborate on a day to day basis. This is also the case for a lot of our customers. I personally found at times that I was on the go with my iPhone or iPad I was frustrated that I couldn't participate fully in what was going on in our Connections community. The mobile web interface was ok but we thought that a native App would be heaps better. We also had demand from our Connections clients who had experienced native iOS apps for other social business platforms. Most of all though we wanted to do something innovative and take Wildfire to another level. Also I had an iPhone/iPad ;). The team are onto doing an Android version as well now.
What do you expect will be the response from the community?
Well to date it has been great. The community has really helped us get the word about iWildfire out there. We really don't know how popular iWildfire can be and really only have a rough idea of the market opportunity. However, at ISW we are a bunch of software engineers at the heart of it all and we just thought it would be a fun and interesting project. It is great to get such awesome feedback to date and the reality is that the next version will make v1 seem very basic!
What's your goal in terms of downloads ? (or revenue?)
We really didn't go into it with lofty goals of how many users we would get. If iWildfire helped show off ISW's knowledge and skills around IBM Connections then great, we have achieved something. I personally would love to see tens of thousands of users using the App, whether it be the free version or the paid version.
I heard there's a paid app coming soon. What's the difference between the paid app and the free app?
The first version of iWildfire is completely free. We wanted to release an App that had more functionality than anything else in available and we wanted to provide it free of charge. In order to earn a small amount of revenue we included some basic advertising which to be honest is really just small change. The next release of iWildfire will have even more functionality and we will still have the fully functional free version but also release a paid for version without the advertising. In addition to this we are offering an enterprise license model for larger organizations that want to manage their own deployment of iWildfire to their users.
Have you done any deals with customers that you would like to highlight?
Unfortunately I can't really talk specifics at this point however we have had 2 significant Connections clients take on iWildfire which is great.
Good for you! What new features are you working on for your next release?
We are really excited about the next version of iWildfire. In the first release we included Profiles, Blogs (reading and comments), Files (reading and comments), Bookmarks, Search and a few other capabilities such as favorites, boards etc. The aim of the next release is to take all of these but make them fully functional as well. You will be able to create and post to blogs, you will be able to now only download and read files but edit and upload files. You will be able to create new bookmarks. In addition we are going to add activities so you can access, create, edit activities as well. After that release we will be moving onto Forums, Wikis, and ultimately Communities. The end goal is to support every feature that we possibly can. I can see some uses using iWildfire as their primary interface to Connections. The other area we want to improve is leveraging the full screen real estate on iPads to provide an even better user experience.
So, of course, the next question has to be: when is the next release ?
Well at this stage I am hoping we can get it out by the end of July.
Fantastic! Where can people learn more about this app and/or submit feedback?
We have a site at http://iWildfire.ISW.com.au that has plenty of info. We don't have any videos yet but if someone would like to help create one that would be awesome! Also if anyone has any ideas or wants to discuss iWildfire just get in touch via the web site.
To download iWildfire from the iTunes App Store, click here.
IBM Social Software
Suzanne Livingston 110000F23G firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  ibm-connections social-software 415 Visits
Suzanne Livingston 110000F23G email@example.com Tags:  ibm-connections social-software 224 Visits
here and downloading the new update.We recently published an update to our reviewer's guide that discusses the major capabilities in release 3.0.1 of Connections. Check out what's in Connections by going to developerWorks
From dW: "This Reviewer's Guide provides an extensive overview of the latest version of IBMâ€™s social software, IBM Connections 3.0.1, and its nine applications: Home, Profiles, Activities, Blogs, Bookmarks, Communities, Files, Forums, and Wikis. In addition, this guide explains how to extend the features and functions of IBM Connections to your existing applications."