A quiet farewell Lotus 1-2-3, Organizer and Smartsuite

Mat Newman  October 6 2014 15:33:21
Last week a fairly significant date passed without much fanfare: The Withdrawal From Support (WFS) for some of the best desktop software ever created in Lotus 1-2-3, Lotus Organizer and the Lotus Smartsuite office package.

This - of course - followed on from the announcement that these iconic products would be withdrawn from marketing effective the 11th of June, 2013.  WFM is the term used to signify that a product will no longer be available for purchase by customers.  WFS means that a product will no longer receive any updates, nor will customers be able to request assistance for these products. The announcement's were made HERE.

Many would already have been aware that - in reality - none of these products had received any significant updates for over a decade, so the announcement made last year was merely a formal indication that their time really was up, and customers using these products should move on.

In the intervening years, IBM had forked it's own version of OpenOffice to create Lotus Symphony, before making a significant donation back to the Apache Foundation of the code behind it.  The Side-bar in OpenOffice 4.* is the most visible indicator of IBM's contributions included from the Symphony code-base.

Although the retired software products will still work (and will continue to do so as long as the operating systems for which they were designed are still available) it was with a wistful grin that I remembered back to when I first started using PC's, when almost everyone of my vintage at one time was familiar with the "/" (slash) menus from 1-2-3, the spreadsheet that really proved the power of the PC in the workplace and began the PC revolution.

Then there was Organizer, the PC based Planner and Contact manager that defined what Personal Information Mangement (PIM) was all about.  Over 20 years ago Organizer introduced most of the functionality required for effective personal and group co-ordination, along with tight integration into one's contact list it was possible to do anything, from planning a call, to making a call, and then recording it back into the event. Even features like "calendar overlays" and group calendars had their roots back in Organizer, a personal favourite feature of mine was the "Include" option, that enabled one to see the "tabs" from any colleague within your own Organizer folio.

Figure 1: Lotus Organizer

Interestingly, while opening any of these applications it's clear that anyone familiar with modern desktop software will see that actual functionality available today isn't that far advanced from what we had all those years ago with these leading applications from the Lotus Development Corporation software portfolio.

Farewell, old friends, I thank you for your many years of service.

IBM Notes Traveler now available on the Play Store - more new features and a fix

Mat Newman  September 29 2014 22:51:17
Really pleased to advise that the latest update for IBM Notes Traveler client is available NOW on the Play Store

There's a couple of great new features that now enable you to reply without history, and choose whether to include attachments (even those you haven't downloaded!) in your reply email messages.

Great to see the development team is including new features with almost every new release of the IBM Notes Traveler client!

Importantly: For those of you who have reported 'latency' issues with earlier IBM Notes Traveler 9.* client versions, there is anecdotal evidence that the latest update has gone a long way way to improving the performance of Traveler on the affected devices

Check it out now:



Introducing IBM Connections Cloud, the new name for IBM Smartcloud

Mat Newman  September 24 2014 13:46:33
Earlier this morning IBM announced a rebanding of IBM Smartcloud, the new consolidated cloud offering from IBM will be "IBM Connections Cloud", and introduced new Audio-Video and Instant Messaging capabilities:

"IBM® Connections Cloud, formerly IBM SmartCloud® for Social Business, provides one-click access to business-grade file sharing, social networking, communities, online meetings, instant messaging, email, and calendar. The power of IBM Connections Cloud is that it is designed to help companies collaborate and work with anyone inside or outside their company's firewall. You can purchase these capabilities in bundles or purchase individual services so you can adopt cloud in a way that matches your business needs.
New capabilities
Audio-video in instant messaging
IBM Connections Chat Cloud delivering instant messaging capabilities as a cloud service"

Read all about it: HERE

IBM Connect evolves to meet the needs of our technical clients and partners

Mat Newman  July 24 2014 16:02:01
Earlier today IBM announced new details on IBM Connect 2015:

IBM Connected 2015

"We are excited to announce that in 2015, IBM Connect will transform into an even more in-depth technical event -- IBM ConnectED.  This event targets our heritage Collaboration Solutions clients and partners, providing a look at the future -- as well as the "nuts and bolts" details that feedback shows is so important to our long-standing technical community.

IBM ConnectED 2015 will take place January 25-28, 2015 at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort in Orlando, Florida. This event is specifically designed for technologists of all levels -- including CIOs, IT managers and practitioners -- and offers deep-dive technical sessions, demos, labs and roundtables, access to IBM technical experts, and more.  

This unique technical conference reaffirms IBM's commitment to our industry-leading solutions --- IBM Notes and Domino, the IBM Connections platform, and Digital Experience solutions -- equipping IT practitioners and technical leaders with the technical knowledge they need to maximize their investment with IBM.  In line with the 2015 SWG event strategy, we will invite IBM Collaboration Solutions and Smarter Workforce clients in business roles to join us at both IBM-led and industry events that deliver content specific to the needs of line-of-business (LOB) roles --  more on this to come. IBM Collaboration Solutions will also have a large presence at Insight 2014 and InterConnect 2015.

In addition, our seventh annual Leadership Alliance event will be held on Sunday, January 25, 2015 at the Walt Disney World Swan hotel to coincide with IBM ConnectED.  During this invitation-only, single day event, key clients and partners will engage in a two-way dialog with our leadership and product teams, preview and provide feedback on our product strategies and roadmaps, and take part in personalized roundtables and one on one interactions with the ICS leadership team and technical experts.

We are thrilled that early feedback from key clients and partners has been extremely enthusiastic. We will open registration and Call for Abstracts in mid-August, along with details regarding tracks and sessions. Please make sure your clients and partners save the date and check the ConnectED website, which will be updated as information becomes available."

I look forward to joining you there in January :-)

IBM Notes Traveler - Fix available now for Contacts lookup

Mat Newman  July 11 2014 11:01:33
A couple of people mentioned yesterday that the build IBM released on the Play Store yesterday had some missing functionality with regard the new Contacts lookup and the amount of information being returned.

The awesome dev team got onto this straight away.  You will find an updated version (build 201407101343) now available on the Play Store which returns the lookup functionality to Traveler Contacts that returns all contact details from your corporate directory.

Great work Rick, Lee and crew!

IBM Notes Traveler don’t be fooled, this ain’t just a simple point release

Mat Newman  July 10 2014 13:39:26
Don't be fooled, IBM Notes Traveler is more than a simple point release, a completely overhauled interface, new gesture based navigation and tight integration with IBM Connections and Sametime make this release a huge productivity enabler for Android users of Traveler.

I've been lucky enough to have had this version installed on my device for the past few weeks and I simply cannot understate how much my productivity has skyrocketed due to the tight integration of IBM Connections and Sametime into the entire interface.  Couple that with the awesome new contacts app, the ability to overlay device calendars in your Traveler calendar and the simplified navigation with new gestures and IBM Notes Traveler is - I believe - worthy of an entire new version number.

Here's a summary of the new features:

Available NOW on the Android App Store, download it HERE:


IBM Connections search plugin for Chrome Browser

Mat Newman  July 1 2014 17:57:51
Every now and again one comes across an awesome plugin that demonstrates some fantastic integration between day-to-day applications and IBM's Connections collaboration platform.  This one is a Connections search plugin for Chrome, and it's awesome.

From the description:

"This extension let you search content within IBM Connections.

The IBM Connections QuickSearch plugin let you quickly search for users or content within IBM Connections and update your profile picture using your webcam or an existing picture.

Use the popup window in the upper right corner of chrome in order to search within Profiles (with type-ahead feature), Files, Forums and so on.

You can also use it directly from the URL navigation bar, by typing "ic" (without any quotes) following by a space then your query. Then press enter for a global search or arrow keys to reduce the scope."

Figure 1: Chrome Connections Search Plugin

Figure 1: IBM Connections Plugin for Chrome

As in Figure 1 - above - just type "ic" to activate the Connections search in the type-ahead bar, and then type your search string; OR click on the Connections icon to limit your search to specific features of Connections.

The first time you activate the plugin you will be asked to enter your Connections server settings, including:

Your server,
Your username, and
Your password

Pretty simple.

Get it here:


ASEAN - IBM Connect Comes To You 2014

Mat Newman  June 3 2014 14:41:54
CCTY 2014

ASEAN - IBM Connect Comes to You 2014

Leading organizations around the world are transforming their business processes to reinvent the work experience. They are energizing their employees, customers and ultimately, their businesses. Attend IBM Connect Comes To You 2014 and learn more about how IBM technologies and approaches are “energizing life’s work.” You will come away with the expanded network, new insights, new tools and capabilities to help your workforce get the most of their work and deliver to customers the best possible brand experience, generating new competitive benefits for your business.

Keynote Social, Mobile, Cloud, Big Data and Analytics.  IBM's commitment to revolutionise the digital workplace and the business benefits for your organisation.


Mail, Mobile, Meetings, Social and More! Welcome to IBM Smartcloud Improving productivity in the workplace is more than simply sharing files.  

Learn how IBM is leveraging IBM SmartCloud Engage (SaaS) to reach new levels of productivity and innovation. This session features live demos, real-world business value and ROI examples. See how thousands of IBMers use SmartCloud Engage on a daily basis to work with fellow employees, business partners, and customers.

Join us to understand how these exciting day-in-the-life examples demonstrate IBM's Leadership and Vision in organisational collaboration and how they can be utilised within your own environment!


Building Exceptional and Visionary Digital Experiences for Better Business Outcomes The digital era is driven by the proliferation of mobile and social networks that transform the way organizations engage their audiences.

Leading organizations now look beyond websites to create more personalized, digital experiences that deepen interactions with audiences with rich content and design for mobile delivery, social engagement and analytics for data-driven decision making to engage audiences on their terms and their time. By combining digital experience technologies with the business, outperforming organizations can separate from the competition, and transform web assets to personalized, interactive multi-channel solutions that anticipate needs and build and strengthen relationships with employees and customers.

We'll share the IBM vision of market-leading strategies & capabilities to build exceptional, award-winning digital experiences that drive customer engagement and loyalty, empower smarter workforces, and deliver cost savings and increase revenues.

Beyond Email - IBM Messaging and Collaboration Roadmap In 2014 IBM Notes and Domino celebrates 25 years of innovation - providing organisations across the globe with an outstanding platform for messaging and collaboration that has been enhanced over the journey with iconic products from the ICS portfolio including Sametime, Traveler and Connections.

Join Mat and Jason as they walk through the existing capabilities of the ICS portfolio, and provide a comprehensive preview of the plans for enhancing these incredible solutions with IBM's future roadmap.

Learn how you will further enhance the productivity of your employees, the Rapid Application Development capabilities of your developers and the ease of Administration and Integration for your administrators.

See how IBM's Social, Mobile, Cloud, Big Data and Analytics truly integrate to evolve your messaging and collaboration environment "BEYOND EMAIL"!

Location and registration links:

Location Details
Indonesia Jakarta 10-Jun

Ritz Carlton Hotel, Mutiara 8&9 room

Jl. DR. Ide Anak Agung Gde Agung Kav.E.1.1 no.1, Mega Kuningan, Jakarta 12950, Indonesia

Singapore Singapore 12-Jun

Marina Mandarin

6 Raffles BoulevardMarina Square, Singapore 039594

Thailand Bangkok 13-Jun

InterContinental Hotel

973 Ploen Chit Road, Pathum Wan ,Bangkok 10330 THAILAND

Philippines Manila 17-Jun

Makati Shangri-La, Manila

Ayala Avenue corner Makati Avenue, Makati City, 1200, Philippines

Malaysia Kuala Lumpur 19-Jun

Double Tree by Hilton

The Intermark 348 Jalan Tun Razak,  Kuala Lumpur,  50400,  Malaysia


Ok Timmy ...

Mat Newman  May 13 2014 12:56:58
The first time we met face to face, we engaged in a deeply geeky conversation about manipulating arrays of rich text objects that I brought to him late one night at Kimono's.  It was my first Lotusphere back in 2008 and I had been hunting down the legends of the community to meet them in person for the first time.  Tim was one of the folks at the top of my list that I had to meet, for reasons that many others have written about today in lament of his passing.

Yes, Tim was a Genius. Capital "G" Genius.  But it wasn't his Genius that I will remember him for, it was the fact this this shy, caring, gentle soul was always brave enough to break through his introverted shyness and share.  To connect.  To answer questions and to engage in conversation with complete strangers.  To share his knowledge and Genius with others.

So many times at the end of his sessions Tim was inundated with large lines of people wanting more from him.  Intercepted in the open by someone wanting an answer to their most technical of issues.  And Tim always gave.  Including, I am thankful, to me.

We were a few beverages into our conversation when I realised that he was right (of course!), and I signified my understanding of his theoretical construct with a line that would become a permanent fixture in our conversations over the years.

"Ok Timmy!"

"Don't call me Timmy. I hate that."

"Yeah, I know. But you've convinced me. You're right and I'm a dumb-ass."

Then came that wry smile, that infections giggle, followed by that signature snort.  And the assurance that you're not a complete idiot in the presence of Genius.

"It was a good idea though."

Most of all, I am going to miss Tim's Hugs.  Tim was one of those people who knew that a hug is one of the best ways to say: "Hello Friend.  I'm really pleased to be with you again."

The world has lost a Genius. The Yellowverse has lost one of it's brightest Stars. And we have lost a Friend.

To Tim's Family and Friends, my most sincere deepest condolences.

RIP my Friend. (HUG).

Sametime contacts, a couple of things you might not know

Mat Newman  May 1 2014 17:00:00
One of my favourite features of IBM Sametime integration within the Notes client's side-bar is the way you can utilise contacts with Notes address features in Email, Calendar Meeting Entries and Group To-Do's.

Many just use their Sametime contact list as a method of looking up contact details, or seeing whether someone is online.  But there are some great features of the Sametime contact list that enable you to easily address messages, meetings, To-Dos, and even utilise the contacts from within an email recipient list to add new contacts to your Sametime buddy list.

Adding contacts to Sametime from an email message

This is one of those hidden gems in the Notes client that enable you to quickly add people to your Sametime contacts, without having to search for them individually using the "Add Contact" feature within the Sametime side-bar, and it's really easy.
  1. Grab an email message,
  2. Drag it onto an existing Sametime group in your buddy list,
  3. Choose the people to add from the suggestion box,
  4. Done!

Tip: If you are wanting to add email recipients to a new group, create the group first.

Figure 1: Drag an Email onto a Sametime Contact Group
Figure 1: Drag an Email onto a Sametime Contact Group

Figure 2: Choose the contacts to add
Figure 2: Choose the contacts to add

Using Sametime contact groups from your buddy list to address an Email, Meeting or Group To-Do

This one is just as easy as the first tip, and I find myself working this way frequently when I need to send something to a group of people I work with.  It's particularly useful if you utilise nested Sametime groups, since you can choose to address a message to a Sub-group like "Philippines", or to a wider group of contacts utilising the main group (eg: My Example below with "ASEAN Reps")

This time, we're going to drag in the other direction, from a Sametime contact group, into the address line of the document you are working with.  My example below is a Meeting Invitation, but it could just as easily be an Email message or a Group To-Do:
  1. Point to the group from the Sametime buddy list you want to address,
  2. Drag that Group into the address line to add all the group members,
  3. Done!

Figure 3: Using a Sametime group to add recipients to an address line
Figure 3: Using a Sametime group to add recipients to an address line

Sametime contacts, not just presence.


Mat Newman

THE Lotus Notes Guy. Productivity Guru. Social Evangelist. IBM Champion for IBM Collaboration Solutions, 2011/2012/2013. IBMer. Views are my own.

#GetProductive #GetLotusNotes

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