News Updates (November 18, 2009)

Standardization of Collaboration Tools … The EU has been giving funding towards the standardization of online collaboration tools. “One of the biggest barriers to effective online group working has been the need for everyone to work on the same software package. Often many in the group have to acquire and learn new software. That complicates the creation of online work groups and slows collaboration. Emailing large attachments to a distribution list is a pretty crude form of collaboration when compared to the application features on offer from major software vendors. But email has two great strengths. It is standardized and it is universal. The adoption of ECOSPACE standards might finally threaten the dominance of email in online collaborations. Researchers on ECOSPACE, a Europe-wide project with funding from the EU, sought a solution to the standardization problem. They analyzed collaboration applications from companies such as SAP and Microsoft to establish what is common and what is essential in the software.More
– They have working prototypes, for interoperability between SharePoint, Business Collaborator, BSCW, and SAP NetWeaver.
– The program has also developed an “expectation awareness” tool.
– They are also working on a collaboration mining tool, for keeping track of who is currently involved in a project.
– I wrote a report about the lack of interoperability between collaboration workspace tools many years ago. Great to see some progress on this topic.

Cash for Clunkers: Confluence Edition … Atlassian is hunting for new customers for Confluence, its enterprise wiki solution, and is offering special pricing. “Current wiki too hard to use? Tired of emailing around documents? Collaboration software costing you an arm and a leg? With the upcoming December launch of Confluence 3.1, now is the perfect time to trade up to the world’s most popular enterprise wiki, for free! Simply trade in your old wiki, intranet, or any collaboration clunker and tell us why you are trading it in. We’ll give you a free 10-user license of Confluence or 20% off a new Confluence license. The four best trade-in stories win a donation of USD $1,000 to a charity of your choosing plus an Amazon Kindle.More

SharePoint Online in Microsoft BPOS … Robert from Microsoft explains the collaboration capabilities in SharePoint in Microsoft’s online SharePoint services. “The BPOS offering from Microsoft provides the education, tools, and ecosystem to help small-to-midsized businesses throughout the world achieve this reality. In fact organizations like Coca –Cola are using this service today and no you can leverage the same tools too. The integration and incremental value-add delivered by each component of the Microsoft communication and collaboration platform, businesses can adopt all or part of the platform depending on cost and available resources.More

Vidyo at InterOp New York … An executive from Vidyo is talking about personal telepresence at InterOp New York this week. “Mr. Noble will address the topic of “Personal Telepresence – Why You Can’t Work Remotely Without It.” The session will explore the following: Technology has advanced in all the aspects necessary to enable HD quality video conferencing over the Internet. So why are we still breaking natural workflow to utilize fixed room Telepresence? Participants will be able identify both challenges and actionable solutions for implementing Personal Telepresence solutions for a more effective tele-workforce.” There’s another session, too, on Friday. More

Developers and SharePoint 2010 … Paul looks at why developers love SharePoint 2010. “SharePoint 2010, the newly announced upgrade to Microsoft’s popular Web and collaboration platform, is receiving a thumbs-up from developers pleased with the product’s capabilities, including its use of Visual Studio as a tool for building SharePoint applications. A feature-completed version of SharePoint 2010 was detailed by Microsoft late last month.More
– Main reasons:
– … Better integration with Visual Studio
– … Sandboxed applications, for better error capturing
– … It’s more economical
– … The social collaboration capabilities are better
– … Good integration with CRM systems

Google Sites Gets Templates … Google introduced a range of site templates for Google Sites, its hosted collaboration and intranet service. “Available to both free and paid users, the templates include entire collaborative workspaces, employee intranets, project tracking sites, team sites, and employee profile pages. Personal templates are also available, including family sites, weddings, neighborhood associations, clubs, charitable causes, and other interests, said Scott Johnston, Google Sites product manager. Each template is comprised of between 15 and 20 pre-populated pages, including sample content, embedded gadget, page layouts, navigation links, and themes. The templates can be modified, up to a point, using Google Sites’ built-in editing tools.” Organizations with the paid edition can also create templates. More

Other Items
– Socialtext is recruiting for a Customer Success Manager, in New York or Palo Alto.
– Mac laptops are reportedly less reliable than Toshiba, ASUS and Sony notebooks.
– Clint offers 10 problems that Google Wave helps us solve, including #4, getting beyond text-only communication.
– InfoWorld offers 2009’s top 10 emerging enterprise technologies. A bit late in the year, isn’t it?
SharePoint 2010 Beta 2 is available. Follow the instructions when installing it, and note that it can’t be updated to a production edition.

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